Are social media companies biased against conservatives? According to Donald Trump, they are.
President Donald Trump accused social media of censorship, discrimination against republicans, and conservatives, The Hill reports.
In three early Saturday morning tweets, the POTUS alleged that social media is silencing republican, conservative voices, while at the same time “doing nothing to others.” This, according to Trump, is “very dangerous,” and “cannot be allowed to happen.”
The president then went on to compare social media’s crusade against alleged conservative fake news to social media’s treatment of outlets such as CNN, MSNBC, concluding that “there’s nothing” as “fake” as those two news organization, yet he has not asked that their “sick behavior” be removed.
Trump’s comments come after the deplatforming of controversial, far-right conspiracy theorist Alex Jones. As the Inquisitr reported, some have argued that Alex Jones’ media organization InfoWars is, in fact, a gateway drug for white supremacist, and an entry point into the world of far-right extremism. Earlier this month, Alex Jones was banned by Facebook, Apple, YouTube, and Spotify.
For quite some time, republicans and conservatives have been alleging social media discrimination, so Donald Trump’s comments don’t come as a surprise. For instance, in March this year, conservative pundit Ben Shapiro authored an op-ed for the National Review, detailing what he claims to be a “disproportionate” crackdown on conservative news.
According to Shapiro, this is probably due to the fact that most Silicon Valley companies are staffed with non-conservatives, and leftists. This alleged bias, Shapiro wrote, has profound impact on social media users’ news consumption. The greatest irony in the context of this issue is, according to Shapiro, the fact that it is Democrats who are trying to regulate social media, not Republicans.
But, if it is to judge by the commander-in-chief’s most recent Twitter comments, Republicans would not mind having a say in what goes on at platforms like Facebook, YouTube, and Twitter.
The recent deplatforming of Alex Jones seems to have sparked a much-delayed debate on the fine line between corporate censorship, and free speech. The president himself was recently ordered to unblock previously blocked Twitter users by a United States district judge Naomi Reice, who argued that the POTUS needs to stay within the confines of the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, according to The Guardian.
Writing about the Alex Jones saga in the broader context of social media censorship, Reason‘s Robby Soave argued that the banning of Alex Jones is not a First Amendment issue, considering the host had been banned by a private company, which is under no obligation to provide a platform to anyone.
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