Facebook is cracking down on more content that promotes hate speech with updates to their recidivism policy.
The update is meant to address a loophole in the company’s policies. This loophole allowed Facebook pages to host content created by Alex Jones and Infowars, infamous for their conspiracy theories and political rhetoric.
The official Facebook pages for Jones and Infowars were deleted back in August last year for promoting hate speech. But it wasn’t long before other Facebook pages appeared hosting Jones’ content.
One of them included NewsWars, which managed to gain over 30,000 likes and was actually created back in Dec. 2016.
The company’s “recidivism policy,” was intended to only stop offenders like Jones and his associates from creating new pages on Facebook — not from managing existing ones to push their content.
To counter this, Facebook updated the policy last month. Now, the company can penalize offenders who use old Facebook pages to continue the same activity.
“We use a broad set of signals to determine if a page violates our recidivism policy,” a company spokesperson said in a press release.
In this case, Facebook said the 22 pages had similar titles to the Infowars and Alex Jones pages that was suspended back in August.
The 22 pages also involved the same administrators.
Despite the crackdown, other Facebook pages hosting Infowars content can be found by simply conducting a search.
Facebook’s spokesperson explained: “Should other people choose to share video from Infowars that do not violate our Community Standards, we don’t remove them.”
The company spokesperson also noted that the crackdown was merely a first step in enforcing the updated recidivism policy.
On the same day, the social network also unpublished a number of pages that were based in Brazil for violating the policy.