Facebook first locked the account on December 23, telling the publisher its account, ads and some of its advertising assets were disabled because it failed to comply with the policy in its posts, which promoted books about Supreme Court Justice Amy Coney Barrett and former President Ronald Reagan, according to Fox Business.
Heroes of Liberty appealed that decision, at which point Facebook chose to permanently disable the account.
“After a final review of this ad account, we confirmed it didn’t comply with our Advertising Policies or other standards,” Facebook told the publisher. “You can no longer advertise with this ad account and its ads and assets will remain disabled. This is our final decision.”
However, following widespread backlash to the decision online, a spokesperson for Meta, the company that owns Facebook, told Fox Business that the ads account was disabled “in error” and had been restored on Monday.
Heroes of Liberty editor and board member Bethany Mandel told Fox Business that Facebook did not reach out to the publisher itself about the reversal, but instead “proactively reached out to several members of Congress and told *them* it was a mistake and we’re back online.”
Mandel said the offices of the members of Congress alerted the publisher to the news.
Heroes of Liberty, which officially launched on November 14, began investing resources to build a brand on Facebook back in July. It used the ads account to promote and sell books, promoting 68 ads between November 23 and December 23 alone. More than 95 percent of the money spent on ads during that time went to ads ranked “average” or “above average” in Facebook’s quality score, according to the report. Just three ads were rated below “average.”
“There was a small but noisy group of responders to our ads who didn’t like the fact we published books about Ronald Reagan, Thomas Sowell and Amy Coney Barrett; people we called Heroes of Liberty,” Mandel told the Fox Business when the decision to disable the account was handed down. “They made nasty comments, especially about Reagan, and about us for publishing these books and even shared their desire to burn them.”
Before the decision was reversed, Mandel accused Facebook of seemingly going with the “mob judgment call” rather than “common sense.”