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- Twitter responded to President Donald Trump signing of an executive order that targets social media companies.
- Twitter was singled out in the order, after days of feuding with the president.
- The company called “a reactionary and politicized approach to a landmark law.”
- Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.
Twitter responded to President Donald Trump’s executive order on social media calling it “a reactionary and politicized approach to a landmark law.”
This EO is a reactionary and politicized approach to a landmark law. #Section230 protects American innovation and freedom of expression, and it’s underpinned by democratic values. Attempts to unilaterally erode it threaten the future of online speech and Internet freedoms.
On Thursday afternoon, Trump signed an executive order threatening penalties against social-media companies over allegations of bias against conservatives, Business Insider previously reported.
“We’re here today to defend free speech from one of the greatest dangers,” he told pool reporters before signing the document.
The order comes after Twitter rolled out a first of its kind fact-checking service, which flagged two of Trump’s tweets pushing false claims about voting by mail.
The order specifically singled out Twitter, claiming that the platform “now selectively decides to place a warning label on certain tweets in a manner that clearly reflects political bias. As as has been reported, Twitter seems never to have placed such a label on another politician’s tweet.”
According to Business Insider: “Trump is primarily seeking to empower federal regulators to amend Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act, which gives social-media companies broad authority to moderate speech on their platforms.”
Under Section 230, social media companies are currently not responsible for the content or comments users post. Trump is asking that companies that “do anything to discriminate against users, restrict their access to a platform without giving them a fair hearing, or take other action that isn’t in line with the terms of service,” should lose their Section 230 protection.
“When large, powerful social media companies censor opinions with which they disagree, they exercise a dangerous power,” the order said. “They cease functioning as passive bulletin boards, and ought to be viewed and treated as content creators.”
In their response, Twitter said that Section 230 protects speech online and “attempts to unilaterally erode it threaten the future of online speech and Internet freedoms.”