Facebook removes content that may designate the anonymous whistleblower who triggered an impeachment investigation by the President, saying it violates the "damage coordination" rules on the platform. The decision follows an earlier decision to remove ads by name – which Republican politicians, including Donald Trump Jr., have posted on Twitter.
BuzzFeed earlier this week reported attempts to spread the alleged whistleblower's name that Facebook would remove ads targeted to them. BuzzFeed noted that the person, a former employee of the Obama administration and current CIA officer, has been a target for conservative commentators since 201
President Donald Trump has urged the release of the whistleblower's name, but US officials and many media have urged it to refrain from printing it. (It is also not clear whether the person named in these articles is actually the whistleblower.) In a statement Facebook agreed.
"Any mention of the potential whistleblower's name violates our Damage Coordination Policy, which prohibits the publication of content as witnesses, informants, or activists. "We will delete any mention of the potential whistleblower's name and will re-examine this decision if its name is published in the media or used by public figures in the debate. A search for the name on Facebook yielded only a handful of results.
Facebook has recently defended its political content, especially with ads that should not be reviewed by Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg. In this case, however, it justifies the decision as part of measures that are closer to the harassment regulations – at least if the name is not well known.