Mifegymiso, better known as the abortion pill UK -486.
Facebook and Instagram have begun removing posts offering abortion pills to women living in states where access to abortion is restricted or banned since the U.S. Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade.
This 1973 ruling declared that access to abortion was a constitutional right and therefore protected it nationwide. It was struck down on Friday.
Since then, numerous posts aimed at helping women living in states where abortion has been made illegal have popped up on social media.
The number of memes and posts explaining how women could get abortion pills in the mail has exploded. Netizens even offered to send prescriptions to women living in states that now ban their use.
Almost immediately, Facebook and Instagram began deleting some of these posts , as millions of people across the United States sought to clarify new legal provisions for access to abortion.
According to an analysis by media intelligence firm Zignal Labs, the abortion pill and its main components were mentioned more than 250,000 times in less than three days on Twitter, Facebook, Reddit and on TV shows.
The number of publications on abortion pills skyrocketed after the Supreme Court's decision to overturn Roe v. Wade.
The Associated Press (AP) obtained a screenshot on Friday of a woman's Instagram post offering to buy or mail abortion pills, a few minutes after the U.S. Supreme Court ruled to strike down the constitutionality of abortion rights.
[Direct message me] if you want to order abortion pills and if you want them sent to my address instead of yours, could it read there.
Instagram deleted it within moments. Vice Media first reported on Monday that Meta, the parent company of Facebook and Instagram, was removing posts about abortion pills.
Monday, a An Associated Press (AP) reporter tested the company's response with a similar post on Facebook, writing: If you send me your address, I'll send you abortion pills. The post was deleted within a minute.
The Supreme Court of the United States.
He was immediately warned that the post violated Facebook's guns, animals and other regulated property standards.
When the AP reporter posted exactly the same post, but replacing the words abortion pills with a gun, however the post was not taken down.
A post containing the exact same offer to send cannabis was also left online and was not considered a violation of the platform's policies. Cannabis is illegal under federal law, and it is illegal to mail it to the United States.
However, in several states, abortion pills can be legally obtained by mail after online consultation with clinicians or physicians.
In an email, a Meta spokesperson pointed to company policies that prohibit the sale of certain items, including firearms, alcohol, drugs and pharmaceuticals. The company has not explained the discrepancies the AP found in enforcing its regulations.
Meta spokesperson Andy Stone confirmed in a Twitter post on Monday that the company does not allow its users to offer or sell pharmaceuticals on its platform, but does allow posts that give information on how to access prescription drugs.
Mr. Stone has acknowledged some issues with enforcing this policy on its platforms, including Facebook and Instagram. We have discovered instances of incorrect application and we are fixing them, he said.
Meta admitted to “discovering instances of incorrect application” of its policy on Monday.
U.S. Attorney General Merrick Garland said Friday that states should not ban mifepristone, the drug used to induce abortion.
States cannot ban mifepristone due to disagreement with the FDA's expert judgment on its safety and efficacy, Garland said in a statement Friday.
However, some elected officials have tried to block access to abortion pills through the mail.
For example, some states, such as West Virginia and Tennessee, prohibit professionals to prescribe the drug by telemedicine consultation.
Specialists consulted by the Reuters news agency also believe that a woman physically residing in a State where the abortion pill is illegal can't get a prescription from a doctor from another State.