Facebook Is Well Within Its Rights to Ban Britain First


Today, Facebook announced it removed the pages of hate group Britain First and its leaders for violating Facebook’s community standards. Vice President for Strategy at the Competitive Enterprise Institute (CEI), Iain Murray, argues that Facebook is within its rights as a private company to hold the group accountable.

A British citizen and former U.K. civil servant, Iain Murray gave the following statement about the news:

“Facebook’s decision to shut down this page is its alone to make. As a platform, it relies on feedback from its users to help improve the platform, and that is precisely what is happening with the development of community standards that Britain First violated. There is no breach of free speech rights here. Facebook is not the government, but a private corporation, and it is not in any way the dominant means of communicating political ideas.

“Calls for Facebook to be regulated like a public utility blur the lines between private and public so much that those calls actually represent the true threat to the First Amendment. Conservatives who are calling for government control of private publishing platforms should be ashamed of themselves.”

Murray studies the intersection of public policy and the platform economy with a focus on preventing government regulation from hindering progress and innovation. 

More by CEI’s Iain Murray on the platform economy: