Former President Donald Trump unveiled a five-point plan to tackle censorship Thursday night, vowing to protect "lawful speech" from being labeled as disinformation. Newsmax provided coverage of the strategy rollout.
Among the key pledges listed by Trump if he wins the 2024 presidential election are the signing of an executive order barring government "collusion" with Big Tech and investigating the Biden administration's dealings with social media platforms.
"I will order the Department of Justice to investigate all parties involved in the new online censorship regime ... and to aggressively prosecute any and all crimes identified," the former president outlined, listing a number of potential violations.
Trump also stated that he would bar federal money from labeling speech as disinformation and fire any federal bureaucrat who participated in it, urging House Republicans to immediately send "preservation letters" ensuring evidence is not destroyed.
Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act appears to be getting a revisit if Trump wins again in 2024, stressing that he would ask Congress to "send a bill to my desk" revising the doctrine "to get big, online platforms to get out of the censorship business."
Section 230 generally provides immunity for website platforms with respect to third-party content.
"For now on, digital platforms should only qualify for immunity protection under Section 230 if they meet high standards of neutrality, transparency, fairness, and non-discrimination," Trump proclaimed.
He continued: "We should require these platforms to increase their efforts to take down unlawful content such as child exploitation and promoting terrorism, while dramatically curtailing their power to arbitrarily restrict lawful speech."
Further, the former president backed implementing a "digital bill of rights" that includes the "right to digital due process," necessitating the government obtain a court order before removing virtual content.
"When users of big online platforms have their content or accounts removed, throttled, shadow banned or otherwise restricted ... they should have the right to be informed that it's happening, the right to a specific explanation of the reason why, and the right to a timely appeal."
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