A federal judge in Massachusetts will ask Twitter to clarify whether it is a “state actor” or a truly private corporation, and the results may have a huge impact on Big Tech’s suppression of conservative viewpoints.
The man who invented email, Dr. Shiva Ayyadurai, ran for US Senate in Massachusetts as a Republican and accused voters of voter fraud on Twitter. The far-left tech giant then deleted these tweets. They were later discovered to have been removed at the behest of Massachusetts Secretary of State’s office employees.
Dr. Ayyadurai discovered this and filed a federal lawsuit arguing that his federal civil rights had been violated.
A hearing on pending motions has been scheduled for May 20, 2021 at 9:30 a.m. EST by Federal Judge Mark L. Wolf, a Reagan appointee from 1985. His court orders make it clear that he is serious about this case, and the court is highlighting a number of cases that should give Twitter and its Big Tech bully buddies pause.
Legal analysts note that by citing these two cases, the judge is signaling that Twitter’s days of insisting it is a private entity in order to escape its apparent suppression of conservative expression, banning dozens of conservative journalists, and promoting liberal views could be numbered:
“In a few restricted circumstances, a private individual may qualify as a state actor, including:
“Normally, a State can only be held liable for a private decision if it has used coercion or given such substantial incentive, either explicit or indirect, that the option must be considered to be the State’s in law.”
CDA 230 can come to an end as a result of this event.
The Communications Decency Act of 1996 contains a clause known as CDA 230, which grants internet and social media companies legal protection from litigation based on the material they post.
This clause of the law allows corporations like Facebook and Twitter to reject claims, but it also allows them to behave with impunity so that their acts are not challenged in court.
According to their critics, these corporations have violated their immunity by suppressing dissident, especially conservative, opinions, viewpoints, and journalism.
Since Dr. Ayyadurai did not complain about Twitter’s “Terms of Service,” the outcome would be determined by the level of contact between Twitter and the Massachusetts state government.
And, according to Dr. Ayyadurai, those links have already been proved in court, since Twitter has created a special forum for government officials to flag and remove content they don’t like for any reason, as part of what they call “Twitter Partner Status.”