Facebook said Friday that it pulled down a misleading video posted by President Donald Trump’s account because of a copyright complaint. The move comes after Twitter a tweet on Thursday evening that included the same video as “manipulated media.”
Trump’s social media posts featured an edited video with a fake CNN ticker that said: “Terrified toddler runs from racist baby.” After that section of the video, it jumps to “What actually happened” — the two boys rush toward each other and embrace. The video ends by suggesting that “fake news” is to blame for the that’s happening across the US.
“We received a copyright complaint from the rights holder of this video under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act and have removed the post,” a Facebook spokesperson said in a statement.
CNN reported that Jukin Media, a company that represents the parent who owns the video of the toddlers, has also asked Twitter to pull the content for copyright infringement. Twitter didn’t immediately respond to questions about whether the company plans to pull down the video or add another notice. As of Friday afternoon, the video was still on Twitter. A Twitter spokesperson said earlier that the tweet was labeled to “give people more context.”
Social media sites have typically strayed away from taking action on Trump’s posts because what he says is considered newsworthy. Facebook doesn’t usually send posts and ads from politicians to third-party fact checkers. Still, social networks have other rules that even politicians aren’t exempted from such as policies about copyright, voter suppression or harmful coronavirus misinformation.
Social media companies have also faced criticism that they don’t act fast enough. The edited video shared by Trump has nearly 20 million views on Twitter and raked up more than 4 million views on Facebook before it was pulled.
“We’ll continue working with facts rather than tweeting fake videos that exploit innocent children,” it wrote. “We invite you to do the same. Be better.”
Trump’s campaign manager also weighed in, to tell Twitter its “days are numbered.”
Last month, the president took aim at social networks with, in the wake of Twitter about mail-in ballots for containing “potentially misleading information.” It also behind a label stating that the content violated its rules about “glorifying violence.” Facebook, on the other hand, has come under fire for not taking any action against Trump posts that Twitter has labeled. On Thursday, Facebook pulled down ads by Trump’s campaign for including an inverted red triangle, which is a symbol Nazis used to designate prisoners in concentration camps.
The executive order, which is facing a lawsuit, instructs the Commerce Department to ask the Federal Communications Commission to rethink Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act from 1996, which protects online platforms from liability for content posted by users. Additionally, it gave the Federal Trade Commission responsibility for investigating complaints of political bias and determining if tech companies’ content moderation policies conflict with their pledges of neutrality.
Correction, 11:37 a.m.: Fixes timing of President Trump’s executive order.