Penalties Are Coming to People Who Don’t Follow Facebook Group Rules!
Social media giant Facebook has begun work on improving the Group experience and limiting access to communities by potentially violating users. The company announced today that it will make a number of changes to groups, including plans to punish users who break the rules, further limit the access of civic and political groups, and need more control over groups that violate Facebook rules.
Group members who break Facebook’s rules will face various new sanctions. Initially, people with repeated violations will be blocked from posting or commenting in any group for a certain period of time. A Facebook official told The Verge that this period could be seven or 30 days, depending on the number and severity of violations. Additionally, he shared that they cannot invite other people to any group or create new groups.
One of the biggest changes will be for members who break the rules. Groups with lots of rule violations will soon have a warning label. When a user tries to join one of these groups, they will receive a disclaimer that the group violates community standards, which may dissuade them from joining.
For existing members, the company will reduce the distribution of the group’s content, i.e. less show in the News Feed. (It first tried this functionality in the 2020 US presidential election, but is now making it a regular feature.)
Posts violating the rules will be closed in the group if approved!
Finally, admins and moderators of these violating groups will have to temporarily approve all posts when the group has a significant number of members, is part of other groups that violate policies or are removed for violating the rules. If these admins or moderators approve anything, even content that breaks the rules, the group will be shut down completely.
In a broader update, the company began removing civic and political groups and newly created groups from its platform’s offerings in the United States in early 2020. Now it is expanding it to all countries.
Facebook has been widely criticized for allowing extremist political groups, as well as groups spreading conspiracy theories or anti-vaccination, to thrive on its platform. As an example, group members who targeted the kidnapping of Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer used Facebook groups to organize, according to the FBI’s statement.
These new rules may deter some people from misbehaving or limit the time they spend on the platform, but they can always do whatever they want using the vulnerability of the system without creating a new account or breaking the rules.