If you've shared this Facebook post about Donald Trump it's probably time to delete your account

Joe Raedle/Getty Images

There's a pointless 'campaign' happening on Facebook to get Donald Trump banned from the website. Here's all you need to know about it.

On Saturday, someone asked Mark Zuckerberg what it would take to have Donald Trump banned from Facebook.

According to the post, the multi-billionaire accepted the premise of the question from a stranger and set them a challenge.

The user, Gavin Mccaster told (slightly forcefully, if we're honest) Zuckerberg that he would be taking a screenshot of their conversation.

In the image, 'Zuckerberg' is alleged to have replied that if the screenshot received 500k likes, 50k comments and 20k shares, he would ban the Republican presidential candidate from Facebook.

Because there's no problem with mob rule dictating the use of censorship. Nope. None.

Here's the problem. Why in his right mind would Zuckerberg reply? This is a fairly obvious case of 'like-farming', when users create spurious Facebook posts just for the likes, as many other media outlets have claimed.

The Huffington Post already cast doubt of the veracity of Mccaster's story, as did Yahoo News - it's a format well trodden with free Lamborghini's, although the banning of a presidential nominee would be novel.

To add to this, there are other posts on Mccaster's Facebook purporting to be conversations with other well knowns.

For instance, here is this 'conversation' allegedly with the Donald himself.

And here's an identical post to that one, from 'Callan Brown'. The writer David Puente has been debunking these posts by Brown, who also shared the Zuckerberg posts when they began appearing in September.

But back to the 'Zuckerberg' post, perhaps the Zinoviev letter of the 21st century. It has become a social media juggernaut.

As of Monday morning, the post had exceeded every single target. It had over 1,000,000 likes, over 200,000 comments, and had been shared over 179,000 times.

And it all means nothing.

Even if this were real and verified, there's a broader point here about free speech - despite all this enthusiasm Trump is still on Facebook.

Mark Zuckerberg is highly unlikely to use his awesome power over Facebook audiences to sway a presidential election in such an overt manner.

In addition, if 'likes' meant anything then all the posts about keeping Facebook 'free' must have worked - and all your information is definitely set to 'private' ever since we all copied and pasted a message about it.


The Conversation (0)