Facebook Bans Ads that Discourage Vaccination

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The social network Facebook changed its internal policy on Tuesday to prohibit ads that discourage vaccination. The company said that it aims to eliminate false information that could hinder public health agencies’ work.

Facebook noted that its goal is to help messages about the safety and efficacy of vaccines reach a broad group of the population. Meanwhile, the company will prohibit advertisements with false information that may harm public health efforts.

The Menlo Park (California, USA) does not include in this prohibition advertisements that are in favor or opposed to specific government policies on vaccines.

Facebook’s idea is to continue allowing a debate on how governments should manage the development and administration of vaccines. But the company tries to prevent voices that directly call the population not to be vaccinated. 

The company headed by Mark Zuckerberg has been redoubling its efforts in recent weeks to control what content is shared on the platform. It announced that messages that deny or contain distorted information about the Holocaust are also prohibited.

At the beginning of October, Facebook deleted a message shared by US President Donald Trump, considering it false information. Trump compared the Covid-19 pandemic with the flu in the message. Furthermore, he stated that every year, many people die of the flu; sometimes, their number exceeds 100,000. He assured that the coronavirus is much less lethal in most populations.

Trump calls for the removal of the legal protection of internet platforms

Trump reacted to the actions of Twitter and Facebook with a new message calling for the removal of legal protection. Large internet platforms have enjoyed the protection under section 230 of the Communications Decency Act of 1996. It indicates that large internet companies are free from almost any legal consequence following the published content on their platform and even from their own decisions to remove content because they are mere intermediaries or channels.

At the beginning of this month, Trump revealed that he tested positive on the coronavirus. It threw the country’s leadership into uncertainty and escalated the crisis posed by a pandemic. 

Covid-19 is getting worse quickly. It has infected more than 8 million people in the US. Moreover, the death toll has reached 221,872. 

In fact, Trump is not only risking the health of his supporters but of wider society. 

According to Anthony Fauci, infectious disease specialist, Trump’s calls are like saying someone was speeding in a car at 95 miles an hour and didn’t get into an accident. So everyone can go ahead and speed and not get in an accident.

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