Facebook and TikTok blocked hashtags used to disseminate election conspiracy theories


Facebook and TikTok have prevented hashtags that were used to disseminate misinformation as well as conspiracy concerning the US election. The hashtags were mainly concerned with baseless claims that the Democrats are making plans to rig the election to conquer President Donald Trump.


On the social media platform Facebook, the hashtags that were blocked includes:

  • #sharpiegate, which wrongly claims that the use of Sharpie markers made the votes of Donald Trump not to be counted in Arizona.
  • Another one is #stopthesteal. #stopthesteal has been widely used to create unfounded claims of electoral malpractice by the Democrats.

Also, the lip-synching company, TikTok stopped #stopthesteal, #sharpiegate, as well as the most general term used, #riggedelection. The two sets of hashtags that were blocked were both witnessed by TechCrunch.

Twitter hasn’t blocked any hashtags yet

Well, Twitter seems not to have blocked any of the election conspiracy theory hashtags. However, it has been including warning labels to some tweets on its platform. Claiming that those tweets may be carrying false information about the US election.


Several tweets have been tagged with a message inspiring leaders to understand more about the efforts of election security.

Facebook included similar labels

The fairness of these conspiracy hashtags is part of the larger attempts this week by social media platforms to stamp out false information immediately around the US election. Twitter has labeled tweets aggressively from Donald Trump that make unfounded claims of fraud or even wrongly state how they counted the election.

Facebook has included similar labels, it has well brought down a set of 300,000 people know as “Stop the Steal”, which added baseless claims of fraud. Facebook also mentioned that “saw worrying calls for violence from members of the group”.

The comment TikTok made concerning the hashtags block

TikTok mentioned that those hashtags that were blocked as a part of its”normal moderation ad approach to misinformation, hate speech, and other content that violates our guidelines”.

A Twitter spokesperson said to The Verge that both hashtags were blocked. Since “content with these hashtags often violates our misleading information policy”.

A spokesperson of Twitter also said that Twitter has been “proactively monitoring the hashtag #StopTheSteal. And related Tweets since Tuesday morning and are continuing to do so. Twitter generally does not stop hashtags. However, it may block hashtags that go against the content policies of the company from trending.

The spokesperson also added that the hashtags are filled with “a significant amount of counter speech across the country”.


However, Facebook did not reply immediately to a request for comment.