Why Is Facebook Doing Trump’s Bidding?

Facebook and other big tech platforms seem ready to do the Trump administration’s bidding when it comes to how foreign actors use social media.

When I first read that Facebook has an employee whose title is “global head of counterterrorism policy,” I was surprised. I had always thought of counterterrorism policies as things that governments, not companies, had.

But it turns out this distinction isn’t always as meaningful as I’d thought. One job of Facebook’s global head of counterterrorism policy—a national security expert named Brian Fishman—is to do what the US government wants done. This subservience would raise questions even if we didn’t have a president with a famously reckless foreign policy. But we do, and so far Facebook seems willing to abet it.

Basically Trump can tell Facebook to de-platform any part of any foreign government—including, presumably, an entire foreign government—and Fishman, along with Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg, will reply with a crisp salute? Under Facebook’s current policy, that would seem to be the case.

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