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“Drunk” Nancy Pelosi video provokes starkly different reactions from Facebook and YouTube

“Drunk” Nancy Pelosi video provokes starkly different reactions from Facebook and YouTube
[Photo: Flickr user Gage Skidmore]

Facebook has apparently decided to permit the posting of an altered video making House Speaker Nancy Pelosi appear drunk or otherwise impaired, while YouTube has taken the video down from its platform.

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The video, used by some conservatives to call Pelosi’s competence into question amid feuds with President Trump, was apparently edited to make Pelosi’s facial movements appear bizarre and her voice sound slurred, the Washington Post reported.

The video was taken down by YouTube, which CNBC reported found it violated the service’s policies.

Facebook, on the other hand, hasn’t removed the video. The company points out that it does not require that information posted be true. The video has been reviewed by a Facebook third-party fact-checking partner, which found it to be false, meaning it won’t appear as frequently in user news feeds and will be accompanied by additional information from the fact checker. Facebook declined to offer further comment.

The video is also still available on Twitter, and Trump himself tweeted another altered video of Pelosi—making her appear to stutter and stammer her way through a recent press conference. (Twitter declined to comment on the record.)

It’s unclear how many viewers of the videos understood them to be altered caricatures, but the footage is getting plenty of traction. One video had at least 2.4 million views on Facebook as of earlier today.

The issue highlights what will likely be a continuing tension between free speech and the desire to keep social media free of misleading footage. The next election cycle is heating up, and video manipulation technology is only going to get more sophisticated.

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