Facebook deletes comments on ad that called anti-Brexit lawmakers 'scumbags'

Facebook removed threatening messages posted in response to a paid advertisement by a pro-Brexit group that called people who want the U.K. to remain in the European Union "globalist scumbags."

According to BBC News, the advertisement itself, which accused pro-European Union British lawmakers of "treason," did not violate the tech giant's community guidelines.

Facebook has come under fire over the last two years for not doing enough to stop hate speech, disinformation and the use of its platform by those who want to manipulate elections. The social network has dramatically beefed up its health and safety team and uses AI to screen for hate speech and other objectionable content.

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BBC News reports that the Brexit Defence Force advertisement was promoted to U.K. Facebook users on Sunday and Monday, mentioning several politicians by name and accusing them of "crossing the line of treason to our democracy."

"Make some noise on their pages, show them we are watching their treacherous devious antics and they will be held accountable," it says.

After BBC News reached out to Facebook for comment, the threatening posts were deleted. The ad by "Brexit Defence Force" was reportedly seen fewer than 5,000 times.

"Any content that violates our Community Standards on violence or harassment is absolutely not permitted on our platform," a Facebook representative told BBC News, adding: "This particular ad does not breach our policies."

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The Facebook representative also said the tech platform has taken the lead on political ad transparency in the United Kingdom, going beyond what is required by law in the country.

Groups that are against Brexit and campaigning for a second referendum have accounted for about 40 percent of the total cash spent on British political Facebook advertising in the past three months, BBC News reports.