U.S. markets closed
  • S&P 500

    -6.26 (-0.16%)
  • Dow 30

    -37.83 (-0.12%)
  • Nasdaq

    -52.76 (-0.45%)
  • Russell 2000

    -1.04 (-0.06%)
  • Crude Oil

    +0.77 (+1.06%)
  • Gold

    +21.50 (+1.10%)
  • Silver

    +0.33 (+1.43%)

    +0.0047 (+0.43%)
  • 10-Yr Bond

    +0.0360 (+1.02%)

    +0.0055 (+0.45%)

    -0.6400 (-0.49%)
  • Bitcoin USD

    +88.15 (+0.32%)
  • CMC Crypto 200

    +355.84 (+146.63%)
  • FTSE 100

    +12.48 (+0.17%)
  • Nikkei 225

    +41.38 (+0.15%)

Meta to allow Donald Trump’s return to Facebook, Instagram

Yahoo Finance’s Rick Newman joins the Live show to discuss reports that Meta is aiming to put an end to Donald Trump’s Facebook and Twitter ban.

Video Transcript


BRIAN SOZZI: Meta is clearing the way for former President Donald Trump, allowing him to return to Facebook and Instagram in the coming weeks. This announcement comes two years after his suspension following the 2021 insurrection at the US Capitol. Here with the details, Yahoo Finance columnist Rick Newman. Rick?

RICK NEWMAN: Well, right. So this is Trump's return to social media, if he should choose to walk through this door. But whether he will actually start posting on Facebook is another question altogether. And the reason for that is that Trump is committed to posting on his own social media platform, Truth Social, which is the company that he formed after he left office because he was banned on Twitter and on Facebook.

So Trump is obligated by the terms of the merger deal with a SPAC company that is supposed to take that public. That deal has been delayed though. So it's a conundrum for Trump because if he goes back on Facebook and Instagram, or on Twitter for that matter, he'd get a much larger audience than he gets on Truth Social. But he would basically be dooming Truth Social because what's the point of going to Truth Social, which is built entirely around Trump, if he's on these other platforms?

So if we just look at the stock price for the SPAC he wants to merge with-- it's called Digital World Acquisition Corp. That stock has basically crashed during the last year. And it's almost back to its starter price of $10 a share. So really interesting conundrum here for Trump's own social media company.

JULIE HYMAN: Yeah, most definitely, Rick, and also conundrum for Trump himself because, as you say, the audience on Facebook is bigger. And from what I've been hearing, it sounds like the allure of being able to fundraise through Facebook is pretty powerful, right?

RICK NEWMAN: Right. So what Trump basically did when he was on all of these platforms and they all banned him after the January 6, 2021 riots at the Capitol, what-- he put most of his messaging out on Twitter. He had almost 90 million followers on Twitter. But then he used Facebook to run ads as a regular advertiser and also, on his Facebook page, saying, donate to our various political action committees and all the different ways Trump raises money.

So most of that happened through Facebook. And I think that's just because Facebook is a better platform for that type of thing. So he used Twitter to sort of spout off at everybody. Those Twitter posts often just got reposted on Facebook but then he used Facebook to raise money.

So now he has these prospects again. But we should point out that when Elon Musk bought Twitter in the fall of last year, he did reinstate Trump's account. And Trump has not gone back on Twitter. So is Facebook going to be any different? I guess you could argue that Facebook is a little different. And it would not so much be in direct competition with Trump's own platform, Truth Social. But it's really not that much different. So interesting dilemma for Trump.

JULIE HYMAN: Well and my other question is, how easy will it be for him to get kicked off again? I mean, Meta still has rules. Facebook still has rules. And how much of what he typically spouts over on Truth Social would violate the current rules at Facebook?

RICK NEWMAN: Right. So I think this whole process we've been through during the last two years, which is both of these platforms kicking Trump off-- they got a lot of flak for kicking Trump off. But they stuck to it for over a year. What Facebook did is they convened kind of an expert panel to say, what are the guidelines for when we should suspend the account of somebody as prominent as Trump.

And so far, they seem to have worked through that. And now they are saying they have guideposts or guardrails for when they will suspend the account of somebody like Trump. So clearer guidelines about when something would cross the line and require a suspension, and it could be-- I'm sure there probably are different gradations of suspensions, such as simply blocking a single post because it's inaccurate or hostile in some way or perhaps might be interpreted as inciting violence. So you could just suspend a post or block a post, or you could just block the account.

And then you could block the account for a day, a week, a month, or permanently. So Facebook is suggesting that they have worked this through and they have sort of a gradation of guidelines about how to handle an account like this. But we're not going to know that, of course, unless Trump actually gets on there and starts posting.