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Facebook, Instagram Ban White Nationalist Speech

Facebook, Messenger and Instagram apps are displayed on an iPhone, March 13, 2019, in New York.

Facebook has announced it is banning praise, support, and representation of white nationalism and separatism on its platform and on Instagram, which it also owns.

The company made the announcement Wednesday in a blog post, saying, "It's clear that these concepts are deeply linked to organized hate groups and have no place on our services."

The post says Facebook has long banned hateful speech based on race, ethnicity and religion, though it had permitted expressions of white nationalism and separatism because it seemed separate from white supremacy.

"But over the past three months," the post read, "our conversations with members of civil society and academics who are experts in race relations around the world ... have confirmed that white nationalism and separatism cannot be meaningfully separated from white supremacy and organized hate groups."

"Going forward," it continued, "while people will still be able to demonstrate pride in their ethnic heritage, we will not tolerate praise or support for white nationalism and separatism."

It said people searching for terms associated with white supremacy will be directed to information about the group "Life After Hate," which is an organization that helps violent extremists leave their hate groups through intervention, education, support groups and outreach.