- Reuters/Peter Nicholls
- Facebook has banned pages belonging to far-right political group Britain First and its leaders Paul Golding and Jayda Fransen.
- The company first said it was reviewing the pages in December, after Twitter banned the group and YouTube restricted some of their videos.
- Britain First has been described by Prime Minister Theresa May as a hate group, and is the main far-right organisation in the UK.
- Fransen and Golding still have accounts on another Facebook-owned platform, Instagram.
Facebook has banned pages for the far-right group Britain First and its two leaders, Paul Golding and Jayda Fransen, from its platform.
The company said in a post that the group had repeatedly violated its policies and, after a final warning, neither the organisation or its leaders can set up new pages on Facebook.
The group hasn’t been totally kicked off Facebook. A search shows that Jayda Fransen still has a personal Facebook account, and several apparently unofficial pages dedicated to her.
Specifically, offences included a photo of Fransen and Golding tagged “Islamaphobic and Proud,” a post caption that compares Muslim immigrants with animals, and several videos that deliberately incite hateful comments against Muslims.
Here’s what Facebook said:
“Content posted on the Britain First Facebook Page and the Pages of party leaders Paul Golding and Jayda Fransen has repeatedly broken our Community Standards. We recently gave the administrators of the Pages a written final warning, and they have continued to post content that violates our Community Standards. As a result, in accordance with our policies, we have now removed the official Britain First Facebook Page and the Pages of the two leaders with immediate effect. We do not do this lightly, but they have repeatedly posted content designed to incite animosity and hatred against minority groups, which disqualifies the Pages from our service.”
If you search for “Official Britain First,” “Paul Golding Official Page,” and “Jayda Fransen Official Page” on Facebook, all three have been deleted from the platform.
The news comes after Facebook’s European policy chief, Simon Milner, told politicians the company would review Britain First’s accounts. The group is already banned from Twitter.
Fransen and Golding still have accounts on another Facebook-owned platform, photo site Instagram. When Business Insider highlighted this in December, a source with knowledge of the matter said the pair’s accounts were under review. Their “official” Instagram accounts are still publicly available, and while the pair have tried to avoid anything that obviously looks like hate speech, they have captioned some photos with comments such as “NO MORE MOSQUES.”
The group’s social media activities came under particular scrutiny after Jayda Fransen posted several anti-Islamic videos and was then retweeted by Donald Trump. He was condemned across British politics, but Britain First’s leaders were overjoyed by the attention. Fransen subsequently changed her Twitter profile header image to a photoshopped picture of her with Trump.
Twitter banned Fransen, Golding, and Britain First as part of new rules taking stricter action against accounts affiliated on or offline with hate speech or hateful conduct. YouTube has also placed restrictions on some Britain First videos, though the material is still available.