Trump Issued An Executive Order to Target Social Media Platforms
On Thursday, President Donald Trump signed a new executive order in an attempt to control social media companies, after Twitter took down two of his tweets with a fact-check label, according to Business Insider.
This week, Twitter flagged two of Trump’s tweets about mail-in voting with a warning that says “Get the facts about mail-in ballots.”
In the tweets, the president claimed that mail-in voting is “anything less than substantially fraudulent,” and listed robbery, forgery and illegal printing as examples.
In reaction, Trump issued an executive order that aims to take away social media companies’ protection under Section 203.
Section 203 is part of the Communications Decency Act of 1996, which includes a variety of guidelines for regulations of “interactive computer services,” such as social media companies like Twitter and Facebook.
The section says that “no provider or user of an interactive computer service shall be treated as the publisher or speaker of any information provided by another information content provider.”
Therefore, Twitter and Facebook can avoid being held liable for illegal content on their platforms, with some exceptions. The social media companies are also given the right to regulate content on their own.
However, Trump’s executive order could mean that social media sites lose their Section 230 protection and rights if they discriminate against users without a fair hearing. Trump and other conservatives have argued that the platforms discriminate against right-wing users.
It is still unclear if the order will be adopted, as it would require federal agencies to decide against precedents.
Kate Klonick, a professor of internet law at St. John University said:
It doesn't seem like it's enforceable. It will be smacked down relatively quickly by injunction or by litigation and the courts.