US President Donald Trump speaks during a campaign rally on June 20, 2020 in Tulsa, Oklahoma (AFP / Nicholas Kamm)

Facebook is not banning Trump’s election ads

Copyright AFP 2017-2020. All rights reserved.

A Facebook post shared more than 400,000 times claims the platform is banning US President Donald Trump from advertising for his 2020 re-election campaign. This is false, the Facebook advertisement library yields thousands of ad results from the Trump campaign, and a company spokeswoman said they are not banning the president.

“Fb is banning Trump from advertising for president so let’s do it for him!!!! TRUMP 2020 !!” claims an August 9, 2020 post shared 385,000 times.

Screenshot of a Facebook post with a false claim, taken on August 25, 2020

More examples of the post are available on Facebook here, here and here. Social media analysis tool CrowdTangle showed shares of the posts peaked on the opening day of the Republican National Convention.

The Facebook ad library, available here, shows more than 5,000 results for “Issues, Election or Politics” ads from “Donald J. Trump.”

Screenshot of Facebook’s ad database showing results for Donald J. Trump, taken on August 25, 2020

Facebook’s database indicates that the Trump Make America Great Again Committee and Donald J. Trump for President, Inc. have spent more than $68 million on election ads, with more than $4 million spent in the week ending August 25.

A Facebook spokeswoman confirmed: “We are not banning the President.”

Social media giants have faced attacks for allegedly using their dominance to stifle conservative views -- a claim made by President Donald Trump.

Facebook has also been accused of failing to curb hateful content promoting violence, including posts from Trump.

Content from politicians is exempt from Facebook’s third-party fact-checking program, of which AFP Fact Check is part.

AFP Fact Check has debunked other false claims about Facebook banning content here and here.

US Elections 2020