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ASPartOfMe
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28 May 2020, 2:06 pm

Trump's social media order expected to have agencies review whether Twitter, Facebook can be sued for content

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President Donald Trump plans to sign an executive order Thursday designed – in theory – to make it easier to sue social media companies such as Twitter, days after the site placed a fact check label on two of his tweets.

While the order is expected to call for changes in regulations that shield social media companies from legal liability, the Trump administration cannot do that on its own – changes can only be made by independent agencies and, ultimately, the courts.

The order is Trump's latest effort to undermine an online landscape he says stifles conservative voices.

"This will be a Big Day for Social Media and FAIRNESS!" Trump tweeted Thursday.

Legal analysts described a draft order reviewed by USA TODAYas election year politics.

"It is a mix of political bluster, very-likely unenforceable provisions that would call for changes to federal legislation – and not an executive order – and a few areas where there might be some real questions," said Kate Klonick, assistant professor at St. John's Law School.

Administration officials declined to discuss details of the order Thursday, and initial drafts of such orders often change significantly before they are released by the White House.

Trump threatened Wednesday to "strongly regulate" social media platforms or "close them down." Those threats followed a decision by Twitter this week to apply a fact check label to the president's tweets about mail-in balloting.

But the draft of Trump's order fell fall far short of a "strong" regulation.

Instead, it calls on federal agencies to review whether it should become easier to sue social media companies over their content.

In theory, it would make it easier for federal regulators to hold companies such as Twitter and Facebook liable for restricting the speech of users, either by suspending their accounts, deleting their posts, or subjecting them to fact checking – the issue that raised Trump's ire earlier this week.

But the Trump administration cannot change the regulations unilaterally. It requires action by independent agencies like the Federal Communications Commission, the Federal Trade Commission, and, ultimately, the legal system.

Trump has threatened to somehow punish social media companies for years, claiming they are seeking to suppress conservative views and even trying to influence the 2020 elections.

The draft order calls on the Commerce Department to petition the Federal Communications Commission to open a proceeding on Section 230, which gives online companies broad immunity from liability. It also calls on the Federal Trade Commission to "consider taking action" to prohibit "unfair or deceptive acts or practices" by social media companies.

The goal, it says, is to "clarify" the regulations under Section 230, which currently exempts online platforms like Facebook, Google, YouTube and Twitter from legal liability for the material their users post.

The order does not appear to address Twitter's fact-checking procedures. That decision triggered Trump's attacks on the social media giant, including the executive order.

Twitter spokeswoman Katie Rosborough said the president's tweets contained "potentially misleading information about voting processes and have been labeled to provide additional context around mail-in ballots." The decision, she said, was in line with a policy announced by the company this month.

While Twitter added the fact check label to the mail-in ballot tweets, the company did not alter or remove another series of posts from the president that have drawn controversy this week: Unfounded claims about the death of MSNBC host Joe Scarborough's former congressional staffer.


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28 May 2020, 2:11 pm

 

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The paper tiger has roared.


:roll:


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28 May 2020, 2:14 pm

ASPartOfMe wrote:
Trump's social media order expected to have agencies review whether Twitter, Facebook can be sued for content
Quote:
President Donald Trump plans to sign an executive order Thursday designed – in theory – to make it easier to sue social media companies such as Twitter, days after the site placed a fact check label on two of his tweets.

While the order is expected to call for changes in regulations that shield social media companies from legal liability, the Trump administration cannot do that on its own – changes can only be made by independent agencies and, ultimately, the courts.

The order is Trump's latest effort to undermine an online landscape he says stifles conservative voices.

"This will be a Big Day for Social Media and FAIRNESS!" Trump tweeted Thursday.

Legal analysts described a draft order reviewed by USA TODAYas election year politics.

"It is a mix of political bluster, very-likely unenforceable provisions that would call for changes to federal legislation – and not an executive order – and a few areas where there might be some real questions," said Kate Klonick, assistant professor at St. John's Law School.

Administration officials declined to discuss details of the order Thursday, and initial drafts of such orders often change significantly before they are released by the White House.

Trump threatened Wednesday to "strongly regulate" social media platforms or "close them down." Those threats followed a decision by Twitter this week to apply a fact check label to the president's tweets about mail-in balloting.

But the draft of Trump's order fell fall far short of a "strong" regulation.

Instead, it calls on federal agencies to review whether it should become easier to sue social media companies over their content.

In theory, it would make it easier for federal regulators to hold companies such as Twitter and Facebook liable for restricting the speech of users, either by suspending their accounts, deleting their posts, or subjecting them to fact checking – the issue that raised Trump's ire earlier this week.

But the Trump administration cannot change the regulations unilaterally. It requires action by independent agencies like the Federal Communications Commission, the Federal Trade Commission, and, ultimately, the legal system.

Trump has threatened to somehow punish social media companies for years, claiming they are seeking to suppress conservative views and even trying to influence the 2020 elections.

The draft order calls on the Commerce Department to petition the Federal Communications Commission to open a proceeding on Section 230, which gives online companies broad immunity from liability. It also calls on the Federal Trade Commission to "consider taking action" to prohibit "unfair or deceptive acts or practices" by social media companies.

The goal, it says, is to "clarify" the regulations under Section 230, which currently exempts online platforms like Facebook, Google, YouTube and Twitter from legal liability for the material their users post.

The order does not appear to address Twitter's fact-checking procedures. That decision triggered Trump's attacks on the social media giant, including the executive order.

Twitter spokeswoman Katie Rosborough said the president's tweets contained "potentially misleading information about voting processes and have been labeled to provide additional context around mail-in ballots." The decision, she said, was in line with a policy announced by the company this month.

While Twitter added the fact check label to the mail-in ballot tweets, the company did not alter or remove another series of posts from the president that have drawn controversy this week: Unfounded claims about the death of MSNBC host Joe Scarborough's former congressional staffer.
Facebook,Twitter,Youtube for sure can be unreasonable to some of there users and often censor content for little or no reason.They should have a higher burden of proof before they can put you in "Facebook jail" for instance or 'Youtube detention" for another and the left gets unreasonably censored as well.


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28 May 2020, 10:49 pm

"Free speech" in Trump's mind is his political agenda. Apparently, the words of his political opponents should be suppressed.

After fuming about Twitter's fact-checks, TanTrump needs to calm down.


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28 May 2020, 11:23 pm

LOL, Biden's campaign doesn't even pay attention to what Biden says, they just spew Trump-hate.

Today Biden's people declared Trump's social media order an "extreme abuse of power."

The problem is, six months ago Biden himself said that was just what should be done.

Not only is Biden senile, his own people don't even know his public positions.

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29 May 2020, 6:43 am

warrier120 wrote:
"Free speech" in Trump's mind is his political agenda. Apparently, the words of his political opponents should be suppressed.

After fuming about Twitter's fact-checks, TanTrump needs to calm down.


Well, it *is* absurd that "Twitter" is pretending to be impartial.
It is, after all, a very leftwing biased platform.

Personally speaking, I think "Twitter" is where all the twits hang out,
Sorry, Donald. :mrgreen:


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Karamazov
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29 May 2020, 6:54 am

Pepe wrote:
warrier120 wrote:
"Free speech" in Trump's mind is his political agenda. Apparently, the words of his political opponents should be suppressed.

After fuming about Twitter's fact-checks, TanTrump needs to calm down.


Well, it *is* absurd that "Twitter" is pretending to be impartial.
It is, after all, a very leftwing biased platform.

Personally speaking, I think "Twitter" is where all the twits hang out,
Sorry, Donald. :mrgreen:
and as we all know a group of twits is a twat :wink:



Wolfram87
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29 May 2020, 7:20 am

Trump signs execitive order that something that is already law should be enforced. Well, that sure is unreasonable, I can see why people are outraged...


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29 May 2020, 7:28 am

Karamazov wrote:
Pepe wrote:
warrier120 wrote:
"Free speech" in Trump's mind is his political agenda. Apparently, the words of his political opponents should be suppressed.

After fuming about Twitter's fact-checks, TanTrump needs to calm down.


Well, it *is* absurd that "Twitter" is pretending to be impartial.
It is, after all, a very leftwing biased platform.

Personally speaking, I think "Twitter" is where all the twits hang out,
Sorry, Donald. :mrgreen:
and as we all know a group of twits is a twat :wink:


:lmao:

You mean "A Gaggle" of twits. 8)

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29 May 2020, 8:59 am

Wolfram87 wrote:
Trump signs execitive order that something that is already law should be enforced. Well, that sure is unreasonable, I can see why people are outraged...
To what law are you referring?  Trump's 'edict' only initiates a process that may take years to simply leave everything at the current status quo.  It does nothing to fetter the activities of Twitter and other social media services.


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29 May 2020, 9:43 am

The law(s) that excempts a platform from responsibility for what the users of said platform may post, provided the content itself is not illegal. With how Twitter and Facebook curate their content they are acting more like publishers than platforms, and should therefore not be shielded by those protections. Up until now they've been existing in a convenient grey area, referring to themselves as either platforms or publishers when convenient i.e. "We can't be held responsible for the content that users upload to our platform, but we are free to censor anything that's published on our site."


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29 May 2020, 9:50 am

Wolfram87 wrote:
The law(s) that excempts a platform from responsibility for what the users of said platform may post, provided the content itself is not illegal. With how Twitter and Facebook curate their content they are acting more like publishers than platforms, and should therefore not be shielded by those protections. Up until now they've been existing in a convenient grey area, referring to themselves as either platforms or publishers when convenient i.e. "We can't be held responsible for the content that users upload to our platform, but we are free to censor anything that's published on our site."
Again, to change those laws may take years, since it has to be reviewed by 3 governmental agencies and get through both sides of Congress.  By the time it lands on the President's desk for a signature, we may have a different President (I hope).


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29 May 2020, 9:53 am

From what I understand, the laws are already in effect. it's just a question of increased and stricter enforcement. Or am I missing something?


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29 May 2020, 9:56 am

Wolfram87 wrote:
From what I understand, the laws are already in effect. it's just a question of increased and stricter enforcement...
... once the review process is completed, the House and Senate agree on a new bill, and the President signs it into law.


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29 May 2020, 10:01 am

Well, I guess we'll look forward to things somewhat improving sometime in the next decade. I thought executive orders were supposed to be special circumstance quick action sort of things.

Twitter seems to be a bit rattled at least; their stocks dropped by 4% following this.


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29 May 2020, 2:21 pm

warrier120 wrote:
"Free speech" in Trump's mind is his political agenda. Apparently, the words of his political opponents should be suppressed.

After fuming about Twitter's fact-checks, TanTrump needs to calm down.

Twitter can’t claim to be a platform(same as public square, allows everyone to speak freely) and at same time act like a publisher(controls what’s posted. Censor those they don’t like) they aren’t a platform if they censor people. So they shouldn’t get platform Legal protection. They can’t have it both ways. So either they go back to letting anyone say whatever they want or they can be sued for things people post on their services like any other publisher.