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Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

The jury is still deliberating in the trial of Derek Chauvin, but Facebook said Monday it has already designated Minneapolis as a temporary "high-risk" location and will take stronger action on inflammatory posts given the potential for real-world violence.

Why it matters: Passions are already running high as Chauvin faces murder charges for last year's death of George Floyd amid an increased law enforcement presence as well as additional incidents of police violence in Minnesota and elsewhere.

  • "We know this trial has been painful for many people," Facebook content executive Monica Bickert said in a blog post. "We want to strike the right balance between allowing people to speak about the trial and what the verdict means, while still doing our part to protect everyone's safety."

Between the lines: Facebook says it draws a distinction between Chauvin, who Facebook regards as having made himself a public figure through his actions, and Floyd, who it considers an involuntary public figure because he didn't choose to enter the spotlight. Facebook says that means it will allow a wider range of "critical commentary" about Chauvin than about Floyd.

Yes, but: Facebook says it will look to strictly enforce policies against misinformation and label graphic and sensitive content. And, it says, it will "remove Pages, groups, Events and Instagram accounts that violate our violence and incitement policy" as well as events in the Minneapolis area that contain calls to bring arms.

  • While the designation is currently limited to Minneapolis, Facebook said the geographic area could be expanded.

Our thought bubble: We are not the only ones to wonder why Facebook doesn't take some of these precautions all the time to keep online content from leading to real-world violence.

Go deeper

Why Mark Zuckerberg is going meta

Photo illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios. Photo: Michaela Handrek-Rehle/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Facebook's "next chapter," Mark Zuckerberg says, is to be prime builder of "the metaverse" — an open, broadly distributed, 3D dimension online where, he says, we will all conduct much of our work and personal lives.

The big picture: Zuckerberg admits Facebook will only be one of many companies building this next-generation model of today's internet — but he also intends Facebook to lead the pack.

Updated Jul 29, 2021 - Technology

Google and Facebook offices to mandate vaccines

Photo: Brooks Kraft LLC/Corbis via Getty Images

Google and Facebook both announced Wednesday that they would require everyone in their offices to be vaccinated against COVID-19.

Why it matters: The Delta variant's spread is upending corporate plans for a quick and steady resumption of in-office work, and vaccine mandates are one way for companies to put employees at ease and increase their safety.

Ben Geman, author of Generate
2 hours ago - Energy & Environment

Key clean power provision likely won't survive in Dems' spending bill

A construction worker walks along a dirt road at the Avangrid Renewables La Joya wind farm in Encino, New Mexico, on Aug. 5, 2020. Photo: Cate Dingley/Bloomberg via Getty Images

A pillar of Democrats' plans to speed deployment of zero-carbon electricity is likely to be cut from major spending and tax legislation they are struggling to move on a party-line vote, per multiple reports and a Capitol Hill aide.

Driving the news: The New York Times, citing anonymous congressional aides and lobbyists, reports that West Virginia Sen. Joe Manchin (D) has told the White House he "strongly opposes" the Clean Electricity Performance Program.