Facebook rules: What exactly is banned?

Associated Press


Facebook has revealed for the first time just what, exactly, is banned on its service in a new Community Standards document released Tuesday.

It’s an updated version of the internal rules the company has used to determine what’s allowed and what isn’t, down to granular details such as what, exactly, counts as a “credible threat” of violence. The previous public-facing version gave a broad-strokes outline of the rules, but the specifics were shrouded in secrecy for most of Facebook’s 2.2 billion users.

Not anymore. Here are just some examples of what the rules ban. Note: Facebook has not changed the actual rules – it has just made them public.

Credible violence: Is there a real-world threat? Facebook looks for “credible statements of intent to commit violence against any person, groups of people, or place [city or smaller].” Also banned: instructions on “on how to make or use weapons if the goal is to injure or kill people,” unless there is “clear context that the content is for an alternative purpose [for example, shared as part of recreational self-defense activities, training by a country’s military, commercial video games, or news coverage].”

Other categories banned include hate speech, graphic violence, child sexual exploitation and adult nudity and sexual activity.

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