The Queensland Premier has demanded the Prime Minister ‘see sense’ and quickly sort out the Facebook news ban that caught vital public service agencies wiped.
A furious Annastacia Palaszczuk has demanded Scott Morrison “sort out quickly” the Facebook news ban that resulted in the Bureau of Meteorology and Queensland Health profiles being wiped on Thursday.
The social media giant announced shocking changes to its platform on Thursday morning, blocking Australian users from sharing and viewing Australian and international news content.
In addition to leading mastheads and regional news outlets being wiped, a host of other pages, including the BOM and Queensland Health were impacted, a move Ms Palaszczuk said needed to be “sorted out today.”
She said she was especially concerned that Queensland Health’s Facebook profile, which has amassed more than 600,000 followers in the past five years and is set to play a vital role in the COVID-19 vaccine rollout, had been impacted.
“You cannot have vital information getting to people when that is where they go to,” she said.
“This needs to be fixed up … today.
“They need to look closely at services such as Queensland Health and the BOM that provide timely and accurate information … They should not be caught up in the ban.
“The federal government should sort it out. The ball is firmly in their court here. I hope the Prime Minister sees sense and sorts this out quickly.”
In a statement, Queensland Health’s Executive Director of Strategic Communications, Robert Hoge, said they were “working urgently” to restore public access to the “vital, credible content.”
“We are in the process of rolling out the first phase of our COVID-19 vaccine program and social media is a key tool with which to communicate this information,” Mr Hoge said.
“The decision to block access to our content could hinder our ability to communicate to high risk groups.
“I applaud Facebook for taking action against anti-vaxxers, Pete Evans and other peddlers of harmful views and conspiracies, however they got this one wrong.”
Health Minister Yvette D’Ath said she urged any Queenslander who needs information about COVID and the vaccine rollout to visit the website.