Former US President Donald Trump on Wednesday announced that he has filed a class lawsuit against tech giants- Google (YouTube), Facebook and Twitter as well as their CEOs for censorship and restriction of free speech.
JUST IN – Trump to announce class-action lawsuit today against Twitter CEO Dorsey and Facebook CEO Zuckerberg on behalf of people who have been canceled by social media.— Disclose.tv 🚨 (@disclosetv) July 7, 2021
Addressing a news conference at his Bedminster, New Jersey golf course, Trump informed, “We’re demanding an end to the shadow-banning, a stop to the silencing and a stop to the blacklisting, banishing and canceling that you know so well.”
Trump added that he was serving as lead plaintiff in the class-action suits where-in, he would represent the users of these platforms to highlight the wrongful power held by these companies to unfairly silence users.
“We’re demanding an end to the shadow-banning, a stop to the silencing and a stop to the blacklisting, banishing and canceling that you know so well,” said Trump while addressing the media.
The suits that have been filed in US District Court for Florida’s southern district contest that ‘the California-based social media platforms violated the right to freedom of speech guaranteed by the First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution,’ as per a report.
Trump has filed three lawsuits alleging unlawful censorship against him- one against Facebook and its CEO Mark Zuckerberg, one against Twitter and its CEO Jack Dorsey, and one against Google and its CEO Sundar Pichai.
“We will achieve a historic victory for American freedom and at the same time, freedom of speech,” Trump assured at the same news conference.
As per a Reuters report, Twitter declined to comment on the lawsuit while Facebook and Google gave no immediate response.
Trump and other politicians have long argued that Twitter, Facebook and other social media platforms have abused the protection enjoyed under Section 230 of the 1996 Communications Decency Act.
The voices have intensified after Trump was de-platformed early this year after Capitol Hill riots alleging him of flaring violence. Some US politicians believe that these social media giants must lose their immunity, or earn it by meeting the requirements set by the government.
A class action lawsuit is a lawsuit where one of the parties is the representative of a group of people.
It is notable here that social media giants like Twitter, Facebook are facing wide criticism, penalty, or in some cases outright ban in many nations for their biased muzzling of voices. Twitter was recently been banned by the Nigerian government and it was penalised by a Russian court for failing to comply with Russian laws. In India, Twitter has lost its intermediary status and is now legally liable for content published in the platform. It is already facing police cases for offences like promotion of fake news, offences against children and flaring religious violence for failing to take down content.
What is Section 230?
Misusing the bubble of ‘safe harbor created by certain laws across several countries, these internet companies are generally exempt from liability for the material that users post under Section 230.
This law allows social media platforms to moderate their services by removing posts that, for instance, are obscene, hateful or violate the services’ own standards, so long as they are acting in “good faith.”