Donald Trump Announces Class Action Lawsuit Against Big Tech
Donald Trump announced class action lawsuits today against Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg and Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey earlier.
According to Axios:
It’s the latest escalation in Trump’s yearslong battle with Twitter and Facebook over free speech and censorship. Trump is completely banned from Twitter and is banned from Facebook for another two years.
Trump’s legal effort is supported by the America First Policy Institute, a non-profit focused on perpetuating Trump’s policies.
The group’s president and CEO and board chair, former Trump officials Linda McMahon and Brooke Rollins, will accompany him during the announcement.
Class action lawsuits would enable him to sue the two tech CEOs on behalf of a broader group of people that he argues have been censored by biased policies.
So, there’s good news and there’s bad news about this. The bad news is because of Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act, Trump is unlikely to win this suit. Unfortunately, Section 230 gives these social media companies broad protection when it comes to censoring and banning users.
The good news is that this is still a great idea for a wide variety of reasons.
First of all, given that Trump can easily afford the lawsuit, this whole thing has a lot of potential upside for him. It gets his name in the news, it fits his brand and it emphasizes the fact that he’s the Republican who is willing to fight. Additionally, there have been rumors that Trump has been talking about creating his own social media network. This certainly would be a great way to publicize that.
More importantly, from a policy perspective, it helps focus the public on the fact that this is going on. It also encourages Republicans in Congress to go after the social media monopolies and to change Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act. If you are Republican, these social media companies are your enemies and they also happen to be monopolies with an inordinate amount of influence and control over what news the American people hear. That should make dealing with these out-of-control social media monopolies one of the highest priority issues for Republicans.
Good for Trump for filing this lawsuit. Whether he wins or loses, it’s a smart move.
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