Trump doesn’t have a leg to stand on re his Executive Order, but Twitter does.

 
TheAnal_lyticPhilosopher
 
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TheAnal_lyticPhilosopher
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28 May 2020 17:54
 

Trump should read more carefully—or perhaps just read at all—the Terms of Service he agrees to by using Twitter. 

Basically those Terms of Service lay out his obligations to Twitter, even as it spells out that Twitter has no obligations to him, beyond those consistent with established law (like use of personal information and copyright).  For instance, by Tweeting Trump has agreed that although he still owns his content—“You retain your rights to any Content you submit, post or display on or through the Services. What’s yours is yours — you own your Content”—Twitter is free to “use, copy, reproduce, process, adapt, modify, publish, transmit, display and distribute such Content in any and all media or distribution methods now known or later developed…”, meaning in effect it can tag his Tweets anyway it wants, especially on their own platform, but anywhere else for that matter.  Given the terms of the user agreement, there’s not even a “free speech” issue here, unless it’s that Twitter is free to use your speech any way it wants—and that you freely agreed to it.

Furthermore, given that Trump—and any user—has agreed that Twitter can “suspend or terminate your account or cease providing you with all or part of the Services at any time for any or no reason,” this whole issue of political censorship is a non-issue.  If Twitter doesn’t like your Tweet, for any reason, it can delete it, and while this is certainly an optics problem that’s probably bad for business, it’s perfectly legal because the user has agreed to it—hence his “right to free speech” has nothing to do with it.  Since using Twitter means you waive Twitter’s obligation to publish anything you Tweet, crying foul when Twitter “censors” you is like crying foul when the government censors you after you’ve agreed it has the right to do so.  Again, the only free speech issue here is that you freely agreed Twitter has no obligation to honor your right to free speech.

I don’t know the full legal ramifications of Trump’s Executive Order, but my guess is a President can’t declare by fiat new law when Federal case law already rules the issue, and that as an application of statutory law.  The President executes the laws, not creates them, which suggests to me this whole Twitter order is just more of Trump’s authoritarian blustering that Republican’s cravenly go along with because it suits their political opportunities.

In any case, if we are going to regulate social media for being liberally biased—and it probably is—when are we going to regulate Fox News and MSNBC for the same?  As I see it, trying to outlaw political bias is not only worse than the problem it purports to solve: the problem itself already indicates that the ship of political wisdom has sailed and that we’re doomed to democratic idiocy anyway, regardless of what we do to prevent it.

[ Edited: 28 May 2020 18:22 by TheAnal_lyticPhilosopher]
 
Jefe
 
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Jefe
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29 May 2020 08:24
 

Just further evidence that he is unqualified for his current post.

 
 
TwoSeven1
 
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TwoSeven1
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29 May 2020 14:29
Skipshot
 
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Skipshot
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29 May 2020 20:27
 

The dumpster probably signed the executive order because 1. He can, 2. He likes to play the victim, and 3. To roil his base’s proclivity to believe conspiracy theories.  There is no downside for him as long as it upsets his opponents.