George Lombardi’s reach was potentially to millions on any given day, until early October when Facebook disabled his commentary connections and pages, all of them.
So gone are contacts to more than 5,000 key friends who are part of his spheres of conservative influence, from radio programs, podcasts and web commentators to news contacts and other writers.
And the damage included cutting off more than 400 administrators of Trump related Facebook pages, most were not in phone contact outside of Facebook.
“They just took it all down,” Lombardi said, who is a political analyst and advisor to Christian Action Network. “And besides that, they blocked me from messenger, all my administrator contacts.”
What that wing of his regular operations included were pages such as Tennessee Women For Trump, Citizens for Trump, Coalition for Trump, Virginia Women for Trump and Mothers for Trump, as well as the original Bikers for Trump page.
The impact effected page-linked communities numbering from 200,000 to 500,000 followers.
“When they took down messenger, not being able to share anything, it was paralyzing,” Lombardi said.
“I’ll add that this is happening right before the election,” he continued. “I’m not making an accusation, I am just stating a fact.”
What then took place were efforts to deal with the problem by phone and email, multiple lines, several accounts, but that also proved fruitless. Facebook had blocked his account-related phones and emails from Facebook.
“I’ve talked to a lot of people and they agree that nobody any of us know of have had their phones blocked,” he said.
Still, Lombardi created one beginning of a bridge back to some of his Facebook works, using a phone line drawn on a foreign account – his “Italian phone.”
Further efforts to resolve the problem included more tries by computer, but Facebook codes sent to reactivate accounts were repeatedly incorrect.
“It’s pretty nasty,” Lombardi said. “And with Facebook, you can’t call a live person. Everything is by mail, email – you can never address the problem.”
you never give up. you just keep on trying no matter what
To Lombardi, the Facebook suppression is just another challenge to overcome, and he will overcome. He will persevere.
“I will keep it up, oh, yes – I will,” Lombardi said. “It took literally two years to set up and build up more than 200,000 followers, so I know it will take more than two days to do this.”
And if taken down again?
“Oh, now – you never give up,” he added. “You just keep on trying no matter what.”
Lombardi also noted that the onward struggle includes conversations with attorneys. He knows this is already taking place among others of his friends and their attorneys: push back is part of the game plan.
“I know the same thing is happening to 100s of people,” he added. “Those of us who have business dealings on Facebook know exactly what’s going on.”
Reported in numerous media is the fact that Facebook announced it had removed more than 550 political pages and nixed 251 accounts, targeting so-called “inauthentic behavior.”
Facebook refused to list the names of the sites. A report by The Western Journal included research finding more than 200 of those purged entities:
“Of the 220 pages uncovered by The Western Journal, 67-percent are conservative or pro-Trump pages, 22-percent are libertarian or non-aligned, and 11-percent are liberal or anti-Trump pages,” the report reads.
Sadly in addition, the Facebook purging included shutting down one disabled veteran’s online political commentary business that had accumulated nearly two-million followers total for the numerous pages wiped out.
His ability to provide for his family, rising above the limitations of his disability and working from home, smashed. (Read more on his story here)
George Lombardi has made a career in business, politics, and writing about economics both in the United States and in Italy. He is also one of the leaders of Tea Party of Italy, which has brought the values of small government and more personal freedom to Europe.