It sure is an interesting First Case for Kavanaugh and company to accept after being reconstituted.
Facebook’s about to have a serious lesson in the dangers of arrogance.
You’d think that, as someone who studied the classics, Zuckerberg have learned a thing or two from the Greek Tragedies.
Hubris is bad, yo.
But like every Greek Tragedy, life has to kick his teeth in some before the lesson is truly learned.
Zuckerberg may have finally pressed his luck too far.
The ‘bold’ step they took of nuking a few hundred Facebook Sites, ClashDaily among them — just before an election, mind you — may come back to bite him in the ass.
Especially when Leftwing activist group Media Matters — who cheered the nuking of these meddlesome pages — has had a detailed strategy on how to squeeze the political right out of our Digital Public Square for a while now.
Here is their detailed document.
It wasn’t ever about truth. It was about control. And Facebook played right along.
But SCOTUS is now hearing a case that could lead to a landmark decision on Social Media.
(If they hadn’t pressed their luck, this might never have even become an issue… but, such is the nature of Hubris.)
Strictly speaking, it’s a case about public television. But because Facebook has taken upon itself the role of censor and not just service provider, they could find themselves squarely in the crosshairs of this decision’s implications.
The case, Manhattan Community Access Corp. v. Halleck, No. 17-702, centers on whether a private operator of a public access television network is considered a state actor, which can be sued for First Amendment violations.
The case could have broader implications for social media and other media outlets. In particular, a broad ruling from the high court could open the country’s largest technology companies up to First Amendment lawsuits.
That could shape the ability of companies like Facebook, Twitter and Alphabet’s Google to control the content on their platforms as lawmakers clamor for more regulation and activists on the left and right spar over issues related to censorship and harassment.
What would Facebook look like if they became subject to First Amendment lawsuits?
As a general rule, we prefer the government to interfere with business as little as possible.
But the rules as they exist have two different categories that play by different rules.
There’s one set of rules for platforms that have zero say on WHAT a user has to say on that platform. (Think the phone company. They don’t monitor or restrict your phone calls, for instance.)
There is another set of rules for Publishers, who have editorial control over content.
They can be sued, for example, over how that content is used, since the buck stops with them, as publishers.
Social media has pretended to be platforms, but have censored like they’re Publishers.
Perhaps they have pressed their luck too far.
If nothing else, they’ve got to pick a lane and play by one set of rules or the other.
Here is the issue under consideration:
In making the argument to the justices that the case was worthy of review, attorneys for MNN said the court could use the case to resolve a lingering dispute over the power of social media companies to regulate the content on their platforms.
While the First Amendment is meant to protect citizens against government attempts to limit speech, there are certain situations in which private companies can be subject to First Amendment liability. Attorneys for MNN have made the case that social media companies are clearly not government actors. But in raising the question, they have provided the Supreme Court an opportunity to weigh in.
“We stand at a moment when the very issue at the heart of this case—the interplay between private entities, nontraditional media, and the First Amendment—has been playing out in the courts, in other branches of government, and in the media itself,” attorneys for MNN wrote in their final plea to the justices to take up the case.
A ruling against MNN on the broad question it has asked the court to consider could open social media companies to First Amendment suits, which would force them to limit the actions they take to control the content on their platforms.
Should SCOTUS intervene in the Fascist Book situation? Or should we all just let it collapse under the weight of their own stupidity while moving on to something that will treat its users with respect. (FYI — we’re not waiting for a Government rescue. We’ve moved on to MeWe. More on how to find us further down.)
By the way, since Facebook has unpublished ClashDaily’s page, your best bet to keep in the loop is to Subscribe to our ClashDaily Newsletter right here:
We’re also moving onto a new platform, MeWe. It’s like Facebook without the data breaches and censorship.
Sign up and you can still get all the ClashDaily goodness by joining our MeWe group.