Freedoms of Expression and Speech – The Battle Between Trump and Twitter.
A LOT of people mistake the two freedoms:
One given to ordinary people (creative expression) so they can be creative and freely express their opinions. One for media (speech) so they can challenge the leaders of their nation without fearing imprisonment, torture or death.
A lot of people presume these rights mean they can say or do anything as long as they shout these rights. They cannot. Not even POTUS can.
There are other laws, like the human rights code or criminal code that let you know what your rights really are, if you incite others to kill, pillage or rape in the name of hate. If you impede the workings of a free nation’s vote. Or if you conspire to get your neighbours to act against the govt .
But even under that, we know that the people have a civil code. Acts of behaviour dependant on where you are and with whom:
- If you are in your own home, you can pray, think and feel as you wish. At least in theory. Your spouse may divorce you, your kids might leave home and never look back. They might call the cops or Child Protection on you.
- If you go into your neighbour’s house, you can join them in their thoughts and activities, or your neighbour can ask you to leave if they aren’t willing to discuss them as two equal opposing voices.
- If you go into a business, you engage with the clerk about the service you need and how it can best be fulfilled. You might discuss the weather. If you’re in a small town, you might know the clerk personally and talk about the church picnic or the last baseball game at the town lot. You might exchange gossip about a common friend.
- If you use a website to tweet or blog, you have to follow the TOS and how popular your words are and how seriously they are taken is based on how people perceive you. I know, it feels like you’re at home and you can do like whatever, cuzz home. But that isn’t true.
Underneath all these examples is a social contract, or etiquette. Expectations for how you can behave.
Make no mistake, it is in effect their property, their business and they can turf you if you misbehave. Either temporarily or permanently. Or they can edit you, remove the blog or tweet. And you really don’t have a lot of recourse. It’s their site.
And that is just for the ordinary folk. Most sites don’t certifiy the members. But ones like Facebook and Twitter do. So now it’s not just anybody speaking: it’s a doctor, a lawyer, a reporter, a union rep…. the POTUS or FLOTUS and his running mates and competitors. People take that more seriously. So if one of these gets out of hand, and repeatedly breaks the TOS of the site, doesn’t the site have the recourse to fact check you? To link to the opposite view, or add a tag line that says “the mgmt of this site does not agree with this opinion and it is skirting the edge of our TOS. Read with caution.”? Of course they do. It’s their site.
But this is Trump, the POTUS. Who has put forward such lovely things as SESTA/FOSTA and previously limited the freedom of the public on social media, and now is going after it again. This is Mr “Fake news” Trump who refuses to address and engage with the media respectfully.
Trump was breaking the TOS of Twitter and didn’t appreciate the tag line they put on his misinformation about elections. The same reasoning that websites have been hit with due to the pandemic. They were asked to edit people who were fear-mongering and spreading false info about the virus and disease.
So it seems that Trump doesn’t like being watched with the same standards he as POTUS asked for, hmm?? Well so sorry about that Dahlink, but life’s a beech then you die! (Wannabe Oligarch says whaaa??)
Because from what I have personally witnessed Trump doing on Twitter re: the election and the pandemic, he should actually be removed from the site. If Twitter treated him like any other member, that is.
BUT it draws traffic to the site. His fans and his mockers are having a blast tweeting. Tweets make money for Twitter.
And that is the jist of the issue for both Trump and Twitter. Innit?
Whose side are you on?
Pssst Trump, have you ever noticed how when you point a finger at someone, four of your fingers point back at you? Wasn’t your team accused of election fraud? Isn’t that how you know it’s possible? Hmmm??