Facebook had prohibited RT from posting news stories. The block would persist until the day after Donald Trump’s inauguration. Russian authorities warned that they could retaliate.
If United States-based media and social networks would go on restricting state-backed Russian channel RT’s access, the nation would be retaliating. The threat from Russia came, while RT called the action a “war,” which was targeting its digital reach. State communications supervising agency, Roskomnadzor, warned about the incident on January 19.
RT informed that it had been restricted from posting content to its Facebook page until late January 21. Furthermore, this time period included US President-elect’s inauguration. RT alleged that a Russian-language network run by RFE/RL called Current Time, along with VOA, were to be blamed at least a little.
According to Business Insider, Facebook said in the long run that on January 19, RT’s access had been entirely reinstated. In addition, the social media stated that it was completely incorrect to allege that the temporary block was connected to external factors or events. They said that they were looking for the cause of the block.
“We are looking into the reasons behind the temporary block,” a spokesperson from Facebook, told RFE/RL in an e-mailed statement. RT said that the reason fro the blackout was not yet explained. Furthermore, RT also said that the blackout lasted for about 20 hours.
Washington Post reported that it seemed quite plausible that the step was a part of Facebook’s attempt to take down hoaxes and propaganda. Fake news and hoaxes took over the social network during the campaign and there were times these favored Trump. RT Editor in chief Margarita Simonyan suggested that the U.S. State Department was somehow involved in this decision.
Earlier, YouTube inquired of RT that whether the agency or its employees were under sanctions, alleged RT. The news network also claimed that United States-based web analytics company, Dataminr, had decommissioned its contract with RT without any reason. These came while RT was heavily scrutinized for its analysis of American politics.
It was also claimed that RT had directly played the influential role in the 2016 U.S. presidential election. However, both Kremlin and RT had refuted such claims. They strictly denied claims that they played a role in helping Trump defeat Hillary Clinton.
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