Former President Donald Trump could be allowed back on Facebook for the 2024 election after his suspension expires in 2023, a top company executive said.
The possible return of Trump to Facebook was alluded to by Nick Clegg, the president of global affairs at Facebook’s parent company, Meta, at an event Thursday morning. Clegg said the company would reconsider allowing Trump on the platform after consulting experts and weighing the risk of real-world harm.
“When you make a decision that affects the public realm, you need to act with great caution,” Clegg told Semafor, the news publication hosting the event. “You shouldn’t throw your weight about.”
The Meta executive emphasized that the truthfulness of Trump’s claims would not be the driving factor in determining whether to allow Trump back on the platform. “If we think there is content on our platform which will lead to real-world harm — physical harm — then we feel we have a clear responsibility to act against it,” Clegg emphasized.
Trump was removed from most social platforms in January 2021 after the Jan. 6 riots, with most platforms alleging incitement of violence. He has since focused on building his own social platform, Truth Social. Trump’s tech company, Trump Media and Technology Group, said in a May SEC filing that the former president would favor Truth Social over other social media platforms if he is allowed back on them.
Trump’s suspension on YouTube could end if the platform determines that the risk of real-world violence has diminished, YouTube CEO Susan Wojcicki said in March 2021. It’s unclear what that standard entails. Twitter has maintained that the suspension is permanent, although that could change if Elon Musk acquires the platform.
Reporting from The Washington Examiner.