Update (8/20/21): Following publication, Facebook took down three of the pages mentioned in this article -- The MG Show, The Common Sense Show, and SGT Report -- with the company confirming to Media Matters that the pages were banned for violating its content policies.
Multiple shows supporting the QAnon conspiracy theory, and some of their hosts, remain on Facebook’s platforms months after the company supposedly instituted a crackdown on accounts and pages supporting the conspiracy theory. Some of the pages even appear to have been created after the company took action against QAnon.
QAnon has been tied to multiple violent incidents, and government agencies have issued internal warnings over the false conspiracy theory. Multiple QAnon adherents also participated in the January 6 insurrection at the United States Capitol. Last October, Facebook announced that it would “remove Facebook Pages, Groups and Instagram accounts for representing QAnon.”
Facebook’s enforcement of this policy has been inconsistent, and a review by Media Matters found that a group of QAnon show accounts on Facebook and Instagram appear to have escaped the ban. The pages have amassed more than 280,000 followers combined. Most of the shows have been banned from YouTube and have used their accounts on Facebook’s platforms to explicitly promote QAnon. Among the shows found in the review are:
- “The MG Show,” a Facebook page for the MatrixxxGrooove Show, a QAnon program co-hosted by QAnon influencer Jeffrey Pedersen, known online as “intheMatrixxx”. The page was apparently created in March, months after Facebook’s QAnon crackdown, and has explicitly promoted QAnon -- the page’s handle, @mgshow17, is also a reference to Q being the 17th letter of the alphabet. Pedersen also has a personal Facebook account, where he has also explicitly promoted QAnon. The MG Show page also regularly shares his posts (Pedersen has claimed that Facebook banned his page and then reversed his ban).
- “andweknow_official,” an Instagram page for QAnon show And We Know, apparently first started posting in July, well after Facebook’s QAnon crackdown. The page has shared phrases from Q posts and explicitly promoted QAnon, along with posting the phrase “calm before the storm,” which is central to QAnon lore.
- “The Common Sense Show” and “Indy News Media,” Facebook pages for shows on QAnon channel Patriots’ Soapbox. Both pages have explicitly promoted QAnon. A Patriots’ Soapbox host, Derik Vance, is also still on Facebook and is involved with a Facebook group called “Patriots' Soapbox Public Group” that is apparently dedicated to promoting the channel.
- Facebook and Instagram pages for QAnon show Edge of Wonder. Both pages have explicitly promoted QAnon (with the Facebook page having sold QAnon merchandise), and the Facebook page runs multiple private Facebook groups. Co-host Ben Chasteen also remains on Facebook, and his posts promoting QAnon have also been shared by the show’s page.
- Facebook and Instagram pages for QAnon show SGT Report. The Facebook page has explicitly promoted QAnon.
- “patriotstreetfighter,” an Instagram page for QAnon show Patriot Streetfighter. The page apparently first started posting in June.
Facebook’s struggle to fully enforce its QAnon crackdown comes after the company, despite recognizing early on the danger posed by QAnon, allowed the conspiracy theory to grow on its platforms for years -- including algorithmically promoting it and profiting off of it. Nor is Facebook the only social media platform to struggle with enforcing its policy on QAnon: YouTube has been facing similar issues.