Kicked off Facebook and Twitter, far-right groups lose online clout

January 06, 2022

It's been called the Great Deplatforming. In the hours and days after the U.S. Capitol insurrection on Jan. 6, 2021, Facebook, Twitter and YouTube kicked off then-President Donald Trump as well as many involved in planning the attack.

Since then, far-right groups that had used the big tech platforms to spread lies about the 2020 U.S. presidential election, stoke conspiracy theories and call for violence have been scrambling to find new homes on the internet.

"The best research that we have suggests that deplatforming is very powerful," said Rebekah Tromble, director of the Institute for Data, Democracy and Politics at George Washington University. "It means that really prominent actors who helped stoke the Stop the Steal campaign that led to the insurrection have much less reach, get much less audience and attention. And that is very, very, very important."

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