Facebook Lifts Restrictions On Searching For, Praising Kyle Rittenhouse
By Bill Galluccio
December 1, 2021
Facebook has lifted restrictions that prevented users from searching for and praising Kyle Rittenhouse. The decision comes after the teen was acquitted on all charges stemming from a deadly shooting during a protest in Kenosha, Wisconsin.
Rittenhouse argued he was acting in self-defense when he fatally shot Joseph Rosenbaum and Anthony Huber and severely wounded Gaige Grosskreutz.
Two days after the August 2020 shooting, Facebook blocked any searches for Rittenhouse's name. The social media company said the incident was considered "mass murder" and told users that any posts praising the teen would be removed. However, Facebook did not remove neutral posts or those that framed Rittenhouse in a negative light.
Now that Rittenhouse has been acquitted, Facebook has rescinded its policy but said it will still remove any posts that celebrate the deaths of Rosenbaum and Huber.
"After the verdict in Kenosha, we rolled back the restrictions we had in place that limited search results from returning content related to key terms including Kyle Rittenhouse," said Facebook spokesman Andy Stone. "While we will still remove content that celebrates the death of the individuals killed in Kenosha, we will no longer remove content containing praise or support of Rittenhouse."
The social media company also said that Rittenhouse will be allowed to rejoin Facebook. He will be able to create a new account or request his previously removed account to be restored.