Facebook suspends USA conspiracy theorist Alex Jones


The social-networking giant said late Thursday it had banned the right-wing conspiracy theorist from using his account for the next 30 days after removing four videos from the network it said violated its community standards. Facebook, however, also sent Jones a warning notice for the Infowars page, where he is a moderator. A page is removed once it exceeds a certain strike threshold, a situation encroaching on several accounts maintained by Infowars and Alex Jones.

It was not immediately clear which videos Facebook removed, but the spokesperson said that the company's community standards "make it clear that we prohibit content that encourages physical harm [bullying], or attacks someone based on their religious affiliation or gender identity [hate speech]".

"We reviewed the content against our community standards and determined that it violates [them]", Facebook told tech news site CNet.

The four videos have now been taken down.

Moreover, Facebook added that Jones' account was quite close to the point where it may face permanent deletion from the social network.

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It's the kind of step YouTube has yet to take against Jones. Jones has defended the videos on Twitter as being "critical of liberalism".

The move comes a day after YouTube removed some of Jones' videos and suspended his ability to broadcast live on YouTube for 90 days.

During the suspension, Jones will be unable to post from his profile. The company still claims that the video doesn't violate its community standards. Since then, he has questioned whether the 2012 massacre at Sandy Hook Elementary School was a hoax, promoted the so-called Pizzagate conspiracy theory which implicated Hillary Clinton's election campaign in a fictitious child-sex ring centred on a pizza restaurant, and said fluoridated water was part of a government mind-control plot.

This month, at a press event in NY about Facebook's efforts to combat misinformation and false news, a reporter from CNN questioned company executives about why Infowars was still allowed to have a Facebook account. In the statement, Jones accused CNN of publicly calling for the banning of his free speech and of being on a "campaign against competing news organizations and the First Amendment", which he called "outrageously anti-American".