A popular conservative blogger, Elizabeth Johnston -- who is also known as the "Activist Mommy" -- denounced Facebook after claiming that Facebook ruled that a Facebook group that threatened to burn her alive had not violated its community standards. Johnston, who holds traditional Christian beliefs about sex, abortion, and marriage is known for her videos that she posts at her blog and on social media. She voiced concern to Facebook about a private Facebook group that is titled: "I will find Activist Mommy and burn whoever runs it alive."
Johnston claims told The Christian Post that when she reported the page through Facebook, she received the following response: "We looked over the group you reported, and though it doesn't go against one of our specific community standards, we understand that the group or something shared in may still be offensive to you and others."
The offending group has since changed its name to "May God make the Activist Mommy Spontaneously Combust."
The description of the private group claims that the page is "satire."
"This is a Tagging group for activist mommy bulls**t and for posting things to look at in horror and make fun of," the page reads. Reportedly, the Facebook page's administrator also placed a disclaimer that reads, "I don't really want someone to burn her alive. I don't want to, I don't want followers to do so, just don't do it. I don't condone it."
Because of hundreds of reports from Facebook users about Johnston’s plight, Facebook told her that the issue had been passed on to higher-ups. However, because the Facebook group in question had a disclaimer and a new name, the group does not violate the company’s standards.
Johnston remains concerned that the initial death threat remains viable. She told Christian Post that Facebook users, especially public figures, are defensless on the social media platform. Johnston’s Facebook page has over 482,000 followers. Last week, Johnston received two death threats that frightened her to the extent that she filed a police report. One email told her that her address had been leaked, while another stated that “punishment is near.”
Facebook explains that when evaluating direct threats, Facebook "may consider things like a person's public visibility or the likelihood of real world violence in determining whether a threat is credible." However, if a group labels itself as satirical, the death threats may not be taken seriously. Johnston believes that she sees a double standard at work in how Facebook handles controversial content.
In 2017, Johnston's Facebook page was suspended because her posts that cited Biblical teachings about homosexual acts. Facebook deemed them to violate its community standards. Facebook later claimed that her page had been removed in error.
In 2017, Johnston was banned by Twitter because of her criticism of an editor at Teen Vogue who promotes teen sex. Likewise, former Breitbart News writer Milo Yiannopoulos -- a homosexual conservative -- was banned from Twitter for his remarks about the performance of an actress in a remake of the 1980s film “Ghostbusters.”