Snapchat downgrades Donald Trump’s account, citing comments that lead to “racist violence and injustice”

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Snap, the parent company of the Snapchat social app, said Donald Trump’s account is no longer advertised on his Discover media platform. The company cited Trump’s comments on “racist violence and injustice” for the decision.

Trump’s Snapchat account remains public and is available to anyone who subscribes or searches for it. But Snap has stopped posting the president’s posts on Discover, as was previously the case. This is due to inflammatory posts that Trump has posted on Twitter and Facebook.

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“We are not currently promoting the President’s content on Snapchat’s Discover platform,” said a Snap spokeswoman. “We will not amplify voices that incite racist violence and injustice by promoting them free at Discover. Racial violence and injustice have no place in our society and we stand together with all who seek peace, love, equality and justice in America. “

Snap managers have decided to access the President’s account from the Discover page this weekend.

This was in response to Trump’s messages posted on Twitter and Facebook that “malicious dogs” and “threatening weapons” would have been used against them if protesters in Washington, DC had gotten too close to the White House.

Trump also suggested last Friday in posts on social media platforms to shoot rioters in Minneapolis. Twitter added a warning label to the tweet saying it violated glorifying violence policies while Facebook gave it up – a decision that caused Facebook employees to backlash CEO Mark Zuckerberg.

In that comment, Trump called people who protested the death of George Floyd protesters “THUGS” and said, “Any difficulty and we’ll take control, but when the looting begins, the shots start. Thank you very much! “(The” Looting and Shooting “comment did not appear in Trump’s Snapchat account.)

The phrase “When the Looting Begins, the Gunfights Begin” has a racist legacy: it was used by the Miami Police Chief in the late 1960s to talk about violent repression of black neighborhood riots and segregationist George Wallace. Trump later claimed he didn’t know the racist implications of the sentence.

According to a Bloomberg report last month, Trump has over 1.5 million followers on Snapchat. Unlike other social platforms, Snapchat doesn’t publish a number of followers. In the U.S., Snapchat claims to reach 90% of all 13 to 24 year olds and 75% of 13 to 34 year olds.

In a long memo sent to Snap employees on Sunday and later published by the company, CEO Evan Spiegel wrote: “We simply cannot advertise accounts in America related to people who trigger racist violence, regardless of whether they do this on or outside of our platform. “

“We can continue to allow dividers to maintain an account with Snapchat as long as the content posted on Snapchat complies with our community guidelines, but we will not promote this account or content in any way,” wrote Spiegel. “It is never too late to turn to love, and it is my sincere and serious hope that the leadership of our great country will work towards our core values, our right to exist: freedom, equality and justice for all.”

This policy, Spiegel added, does not mean that “we remove content that people disagree with” or “delete accounts that are insensitive to some people”.

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