September 27, 2021

Clarence Thomas warns SCOTUS will have to reckon with tech censorship

Social media companies are monopolies and enjoy unchecked power. The party may be over for them sooner rather than later, however.

U.S. Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas predicted that Big Tech will have a reckoning soon, Breitbart reported. In a concurrent opinion on a case involving former President Donald Trump, Thomas noted the significant role of social which may ultimately require their power scaled back. 

“We will soon have no choice but to address how our legal doctrines apply to highly concentrated, privately owned information infrastructure such as digital platforms,” Thomas wrote. The comments were part of an opinion on an appeal case over whether it was Constitutional for former President Donald Trump to block his critics.

Trump is now out of office making the case moot, but the question as to the nature of a social media platform is yet to be answered. Thomas sees this as an issue coming down the pike given the role the platform — and the company’s leaders — have recently used.

The rationale for disallowing the former president to block users was that he was using social media for public policy discourse, making Twitter a de facto public forum that granted users First Amendment protections, Fox News reported. However, the company had total control to block all users which contradicted that rationale used by the Second Circuit Court of Appeals.

“[I]t seems rather odd to say that something is a government forum when a private company has unrestricted authority to do away with it,” Thomas wrote in his opinion. He further noted that it is typically the “government’s control over that space” that confers the First Amendment protections which is something that didn’t happen with the social media company.

“The Second Circuit feared that then-President Trump cut off speech by using the features that Twitter made available to him,” Thomas added. “But if the aim is to ensure that speech is not smothered, then the more glaring concern must perforce be the dominant digital platforms themselves. As Twitter made clear, the right to cut off speech lies most powerfully in the hands of private digital platforms. The extent to which that power matters for purposes of the First Amendment and the extent to which that power could lawfully be modified raise interesting and important questions.”

Many are worried about the power social media companies have in the public discourse, and Thomas is correct that the courts may need to decide what happens from here. Although Trump was taken to task for blocking users, he ultimately was thrown off the platform completely while still a sitting president — and that massive power was in the hands of a private company.

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Kuunue (@guest_1199198)
5 months ago

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MICHAEL (@guest_1199216)
Reply to  Kuunue
5 months ago

I really hope they will do something about these bias Tech companies. We have given them way to much power. These companies are exactly like drug dealers and the vast majority of people are HOOKED!!!

Larry Schillinger (@guest_1199669)
Reply to  MICHAEL
5 months ago

It appears what this is leading up to is a little thing called a monopoly, and if anyone has ever read real history, oops that leaves out most millennial, Facebook, Twitter are monopoles and will be broke up sometime in the near future

Paul E (@guest_1199371)
Reply to  Kuunue
5 months ago

Liar

Paul E (@guest_1199372)
Reply to  Paul E
5 months ago

My previous reply was to Kuuneu!

Billy (@guest_1199200)
5 months ago

Get off their butts and cause some differance in the lying Media.

Notalib (@guest_1199204)
5 months ago

As much as I detest government interference in most business and private matters I think big social media has overstepped their “free speech” window. When they start cancelling the President of the U.S., even if Biden the brain dead, and Conservatives they have gone too far.

They are bringing it on themselves.

Barb Anderson (@guest_1199255)
Reply to  Notalib
5 months ago

🙂

GINETTE COHEN (@guest_1199340)
Reply to  Notalib
5 months ago

Thank you Clarence Thomas for defending the first Amendment of the Constitution that no law has the right of “prohibiting the free exercise or abridging the freedom of speech” The Supreme Court should act and give President Trump the Right to defend himself when his election was stolen.

Leila Jaden (@guest_1199401)
Reply to  Notalib
5 months ago

When the media cancels Trump and his followers,they’re trying to avoid what happened on Jan 6.

Sharon (@guest_1199205)
5 months ago

Let justice rule

Scott (@guest_1199209)
5 months ago

Does Clarence even have a valid bar license last I looked he does not it was no longer active. Do a search in the Maryland bar license lookup and use his name. See corruption is all over White House, our federal courts the IRS, FBI, FDIC, SEC, FINRA, federal reserve bank, all religions, investment firms.

michael demeo (@guest_1199227)
Reply to  Scott
5 months ago

” GREAT SCOTT” A CLIP FROM PERRY WHITE AT THE END OF THE DAY CLARK KENT AKA SUPERMAN WOULD ROUND UP THE NAY SAYERS AND RETURN METROPOLIS TO A LAW ABIDING CITY. THIS IS WHAT NEEDS TO BE DONE.

Barb Anderson (@guest_1199256)
Reply to  Scott
5 months ago

Maybe so but I think there is a link missing here; he is also and has been one of our better judges for the Conservative and minorities.

Alice (@guest_1199308)
Reply to  Barb Anderson
5 months ago

I agree! Big Tech must be controlled.

Daniel from TN (@guest_1199260)
Reply to  Scott
5 months ago

Whether or not Clarence has a valid law license is irrelevant. a law license is not a requirement to be a Supreme Court justice. In fact, there have been justices in the past who weren’t even lawyers, much less licensed lawyers.

Betty Rickmond (@guest_1199228)
5 months ago

At least Justice Clarence Thomas wants
to abide by the Constitution. If a couple more
Justices had joined him and allowed the
hearings of the illegal voting; our country might not be in the mess it is now!

Barb Anderson (@guest_1199258)
Reply to  Betty Rickmond
5 months ago

Amen, I reiterate, he is one of our best judges…Roberts needs to go and the better the sooner..he is corrupt.

Alice (@guest_1199310)
Reply to  Betty Rickmond
5 months ago

Absolutely right!

rick (@guest_1199238)
5 months ago

Bravo Justice Thomas! Finally, a Justice with a spine! These grads of the Joseph Goebbels School of Broadcasting & Media need to be severely punished every time they knowingly spread propaganda!

Jesse (@guest_1199251)
5 months ago

I am beginning to hate my own country. Politicians are all insane. The same thing goes for the large internet companies.

Barb Anderson (@guest_1199262)
Reply to  Jesse
5 months ago

I get upset when a multi millionaire asks me for a political donation! Why? Because they only have to serve one term and they are just that plus they take perks with them that we continue to pay for..even spouses of certain legislators get half if that person dies.

Barb Anderson (@guest_1199266)
Reply to  Jesse
5 months ago

Yep! We have a social disease developing worse and worse each day…families being torn apart by government; government involved in child trafficking…like DFS; murders within the families and then taking their own lives with the belief that what is ahead of them by being dead is better than being here..and while that is true for the believing Christian…it is still a rapidly increasing social disease of the worst kind…murderers, do not get punished; they get turned loose; our children are not well educated so they are easily led down the green brick road into Hell.

Fred Amirault (@guest_1199301)
5 months ago

What we have to check are the evangelicals and ThE American Digest Media company. You Talk like the left is radical when the right is the only Radical Group ANTIFA, name one member? Evangelicals? You were led by an anti-Christ, Yes, Donald Trump is an antiChrist

Patricia Holub (@guest_1199356)
Reply to  Fred Amirault
5 months ago

You are so wrong in practically ever word of your comment I don’t even where to begin so I

Patricia Holub (@guest_1199373)
Reply to  Fred Amirault
5 months ago

Wrong. Wrong. Wrong. Ignorant, bigoted, hateful, and ridiculous (to preach about subject s about which you know nothing or have incorrect information

Nancy Portia Barberis (@guest_1199304)
5 months ago

Amen about time.
Now you step up after they have ruined AMERICAN LIFE as we knew it.
Some judges are in their pockets, what about those crooks. CLEAN HOUSE.

Patricia Holub (@guest_1199368)
5 months ago

Why leave a reply when it is wiped off halfway through!? This person knows nothing of Christ or Christianity or Antifa or President Trump. I believe he said you needed to be dealt with. Thank you for letting me get this far. This hateful person who is incredibly ignorant and/or an insulting liar should have been censored since apparently you censor people – I have personal experience with that

Paul E (@guest_1199374)
5 months ago

The way I see it. If Trump was not able to block people then, they should not be able to block him.

TroopAbn (@guest_1199810)
5 months ago

During the Obama/Biden reign, a small company took the big titans, “Aol-Google-Target-Gannett” to Judge Jackson’s Norfolk Court and with a 12-man jury, beat them on every single charge, approximately 8 or 9. And it was unanimous: 12-0. Later, Google took it to the US Appeals court, where 2 of the 3 judges decided to “toss” the case. Vringo took the case to the US Supreme Court. The US “Corrupt Court” wouldn’t even look at (Vringo vs IP Internet). No, don’t think this will happen either!

Philip e Chapman (@guest_1199925)
5 months ago

totally tied of fake news and big tech is behind it…

Karen (@guest_1200181)
5 months ago

They The Politicians have made it impossible to talk to them. Only if you Donate can you make comment or place a view for or against. This is not a country now operating for the people by the people but by the dictators and rulers of their position. Government is evil and getting worse everyday. There needs to be time served and paid limits on our Government official’s, they make the laws and protect themselves from the rule-lings.

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