Facebook has taken down over 80 pages devoted to alternative health in an effort to clamp down on fake news.

Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg recently vowed to purge fake news from the social media platform, and it appears the crackdown has begun. Without warning or explanation, Facebook started deleting dozens of pages centered on alternative health issues, such as natural remedies and organic living.

Many of the pages and groups affected enjoyed a massive following, ranging from thousands of ardent followers skyrocketing up to even the millions. Some of the affected accounts include:

  • Just Natural Medicine (1 million followers)
  • Natural Cures Not Medicine (2.3 million followers)
  • People’s Awakening (3.6 million followers)
  • Conscious Life News (1.1 million followers)
  • Collectively Conscious (915,000 followers)

Banning the Pages Could Ruin Business

This deletion has caught hundreds of admins off-guard, finding their Facebook pages simply gone; the results of years of intense labor and investment into social media have vanished. Many Facebook admins spend huge money to advertise these pages, and the ban may put a stop to what could be some individuals’ only source of income.

Many of the admins have voiced their lament regarding Facebook’s indiscriminate deletion of the pages.

“The grotesque reality is that Facebook doesn’t give a damn that years of hard work by page creators is being callously deleted in an instant without recourse,” said Brendan D. Murphy, cofounder of Global Freedom Movement. “They don’t give a damn that businesses are being ripped apart by their acts of censorship violence.”

Jake Passi, owner of the now-deleted Collectively Conscious page, said he made between $2,000 to $4,000 every month from his page. Now that source of income is gone, almost instantaneously. He says his page provided people with credible health information that mainstream media may neglect to cover.

Alternative Health Content Does Not Mean Illegitimate Health Content

What many admins found disheartening is the collective of blanket responses they received from Facebook after numerous efforts trying to figure out why their pages were pulled down. A few received responses informing them that they violated Facebook’s Terms of Service. Others were told that their pages misled users into fraudulent likes or engagement.

There was no opportunity to modify any offending posts or appeal the decision.

Passi said he believes Facebook is targeting alternative health pages that do not buy into the mainstream content popular on conventional news outlets. This comment is against the background that several Facebook employees were former staff of CNN and NBC, among others.

Analysts are stating that alternative health pages and websites often spread false and misleading health information not covered by scientific evidence, usually regarding medicinal remedies and natural cures, manipulating the public into making decisions that might ultimately harm them.

However, these same analysts caution that the “alternative” tag does not necessarily mean “illegitimate.” There is overwhelming proof from Asian countries that alternative medicines are effective, but people in the West are slow in straying away from conventional medicine. As we’ve seen in the past decade, however, a more homeopathic approach has gained popularity as yoga, keto diets, and other regimens become more commonplace.

Affected Admins Are Now Migrating to Other, More Permissive Platforms

Going back, the big question right now is: how did Facebook differentiate the alternative health content that is “valid” from those that are “misleading and fraudulent” before deleting affected pages?

There seems to be no answer yet from Facebook on this, but many affected admins are considering a number of options in wake of the deletions. Some are considering a class action lawsuit, while others have dusted themselves off and have began setting up a new social platform for wide-ranging health issues, stretching from drugs to energy healing.

One of the new platforms for alternative thinkers is Trooth.

According to the site, the “platform is an uncensored alternative to the Deep State platform known as Facebook, and a superior option to other social sites for nurturing your tribe.”

Other admins are migrating to alternative but existing platforms such as Minds, Steemit and iFeed. According to the admins, these platforms are “fully customizable, open-source, decentralized, free speech social network.”

“Facebook has gone nuts with adding rules that restrict freedom of speech and freedom of the press in massive ways,” Passi says. “Eventually the public will say enough is enough and begin to migrate elsewhere. There are already many alternatives.”

 

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