The Disinformation Dozen
How long will it take Facebook and Instagram to enforce their own policies on these documented, repeat offenders?
On February 8, 2021, Facebook announced another update to their policies to address COVID-19 and vaccine disinformation and misinformation on their platforms.
Tenpenny’s Facebook Page for her site and storefront (vaxxter.com) appears to have been removed by Facebook, but her Instagram account, which has over 124,000 followers, remains active and continues to violate Facebook’s stated policies in both posted content and live video appearances.
Facebook’s policy states that “Groups, Pages and accounts on Facebook and Instagram that repeatedly share these debunked claims may be removed altogether.” Tenpenny has violated those policies no fewer than 7 times in the past three months, which would seem to rise to the threshold for removal based on repeated sharing.
Examples of Violations
Facebook’s policies state that false claims about the safety and efficacy of masks are prohibited – Tenpenny, who regularly advocates against mask-wearing, is clearly in violation of that policy here.
After Instagram took down an Instagram Live with disgraced former doctor Andrew Wakefield, Tenpenny took to Instagram again with Wakefield with a video where Wakefield calls COVID-19 an “alleged plague”, and errantly discusses a vaccine that “has killed more children than it has saved from the targeted disease.” This video alone contains numerous violations of Facebook’s stated policies, yet remains available even though Instagram saw fit to remove it the first time it was posted.
Tenpenny also posts “Stop getting tested. If you are getting tested you are part of the problem.” This clearly violates Facebook’s policy against claims that can discourage someone from getting a government-approved COVID-19 test.
The Disinformation Dozen
Guy Rosen, who oversees content decisions recently told the Guardian “[Facebook] will begin enforcing this policy immediately, with a particular focus on Pages, groups and accounts that violate these rules.”
Based on reports from The Center for Countering Digital Hate and other organizations that have been monitoring the activities and growth of anti-vaxx pages and groups, the disinformation dozen is a list of some of the most frequent violators of Facebook’s new (and old) policies.
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