Facebook bars content claiming to name Trump impeachment whistleblower

Donald Trump looks at Sen. Rand Paul

Donald Trump looks at Sen. Rand Paul

The company's statement follows right-wing Breitbart News' publication of an article that said it identified the whistleblower. The company does not have a policy against identifying whistleblowers by name and is not removing the posts.

"Administrators of Breitbart News" Facebook page began receiving notifications on Wednesday evening stating that Breitbart's page is "at risk of being unpublished' but were not given any details as to why, or even which posts were allegedly at issue", he detailed.

Facebook says it is removing "any and all mention of the potential whistleblower's name" from its platform. Similarly, Google-owned YouTube is removing videos that mention the name of the potential whistleblower, as CNN reported earlier.

Saagar Enjeti, Chief Washington Correspondent for The Hill, also tweeted the alleged whistleblower's name. Facebook's requirement to revise its policy on Ciaramella appears to already have been met. Last week, Twitter said it is banning all political ads from its service, in sharp contrast to Facebook, which continues to defend running paid political ads, even false ones, as a free speech priority.

The whistleblower, a USA intelligence official who complained about Trump's July 25 telephone call with Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelenskiy, has in recent days become a target of attacks by Trump, his allies in Congress and the conservative media, who have pushed for the person to be publicly identified.

CNN reports that Facebook and YouTube have made a decision to remove posts with the name, while Twitter - where US House Rep. Matt Gaetz and Donald Trump Jr.

But the whistleblower's attorneys have said that such disclosure poses a threat to their client, and they have urged news outlets to refrain from doing so. It could also prompt a backlash among some Senate Republicans who have long defended whistleblowers.

Newsweek has not verified the identity of the whistleblower. Falsely captioned photos of former White House staffer David Edelman circulated widely on Twitter, Facebook and Reddit this week as social media users tried to unmask the whistleblower.

Breitbart News is now the 68th-most visited site in the United States according to Alexa, and the 13th most-engaged Facebook publisher in the world according to NewsWhip.

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