Trump signs executive order aimed at regulating social media

by Jordyn Pair · May 28th, 2020 4:47 pm

President Trump signed an executive order on Thursday aimed at making it easier to sue social media companies.

The order comes just days after Twitter placed a fact check label on two of the president's tweets. It looks to modify Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act, which grants liability protections to social media companies.

Trump said at the signing of the order that a "small handful of social media monopolies" have "unchecked power to censor, restrict, edit, shape, hide, alter virtually any form of communication between private citizens or large public audiences."

"There's no precedent in American history for so small a number of corporations to control so large a sphere of human interaction," Trump said.

Trump also said that Attorney General William Barr would work with states to establish regulations and that the administration would be developing policies to prevent taxpayer money from going to companies that "suppress free speech."

Experts have pointed out that Section 230 can likely only be amended by Congress.

"It is a mix of political bluster, very-likely unenforceable provisions that would call for changes to federal legislation – and not an executive order – and a few areas where there might be some real questions," Kate Klonick, assistant professor at St. John's Law School, told USA Today.

The executive order will likely be challenged in court.


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