Facebook bans ‘violent’ Boogaloo-linked network
Facebook claims to have removed and banned hundreds of accounts linked to a “violent” and “anti-government” American movement.
He said the network was loosely linked to the wider far-right “Boogaloo” movement, but it was distinct because it actively sought to commit violence.
Armed members of Boogaloo have been seen in recent U.S. protests.
The move comes Facebook faces a boycott from advertisers for hate speech on the platform.
Major companies including Ford, Adidas, Coca-Cola and Starbucks have withdrawn advertising from Facebook, prompted by activists who claim that the social media company is not doing enough to remove racist and other hateful content.
On Tuesday, Facebook said it was stopping the “dangerous” group on its platform.
“It is actively promoting violence against civilians, law enforcement and government officials and institutions,” says a statement. “Members of this network try to recruit others within the larger boogaloo movement, sharing the same content online and adopting the same offline aspect as others in the movement to do it.”
The Boogaloo movement shares its followers with some neo-Nazi and white supremacist groups, as well as with libertarians and anarchists.
Facebook has removed 220 accounts on its platform of the same name and 95 other accounts from Instagram, as well as 28 pages and 106 groups that “currently understand the network”.
“We also removed over 400 additional groups and over 100 other pages for violating our policy on dangerous individuals and organizations,” he said.
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He added that the removal of the accounts was “the last step in our commitment to ban people who proclaim a violent mission from using our platform.”
The social media site claimed to have followed the Boogaloo movement closely since 2019.
The movement, often referred to as “Boogaloo Bois”, is loose and leaderless. Followers generally subscribe to two fundamental beliefs: the desire for an armed overthrow of the government and an unshakable commitment to ownership of arms.
It started as a relatively small movement on the 4chan website, but has grown significantly over the years.
Last month, a US Air Force sergeant with ties to the movement was charged with the murder of a federal security officer during a Black Lives Matter protest. He was also charged with killing another officer eight days later.
Last week, Attorney General William Barr formed a Justice Department task force to combat violent anti-government extremists, including the Boogaloo movement.