- US President Donald Trump claims that Twitter’s trending section only shows bad trends about him.
- Trump had signed an executive order in May to weaken Section 230 which protects the social media companies from lawsuits over content they post.
- In the latest development, The Commerce Department has asked the Federal Communications Commission to write a regulation weakening protections laid out in Section 230.
US President Donald Trump criticised Twitter's Trending section saying that all trends about him are bad and blown out of proportion which is ridiculous, illegal, and unfair. Trump said that all the trends about him are shown in a bad light.
"So disgusting to watch Twitter's so-called 'Trending', where sooo many trends are about me, and never a good one. They look for anything they can find, make it as bad as possible, and blow it up, trying to make it trend. Really ridiculous, illegal, and, of course, very unfair!" Trump wrote on Twitter.
So disgusting to watch Twitter's so-called "Trending", where sooo many trends are about me, and never a good one. They look for anything they can find, make it as bad as possible, and blow it up, trying to make it trend. Really ridiculous, illegal, and, of course, very unfair!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 27, 2020
Trump did not cite any particular trend to back his claim but did write that the trending topics were illegal. Twitter shows topics that are current and are based on the user's search.
According to Twitter's FAQ section, "Trends are determined by an algorithm and, by default, are tailored for you based on who you follow, your interests, and your location. This algorithm identifies topics that are popular now, rather than topics that have been popular for a while or on a daily basis, to help you discover the hottest emerging topics of discussion on Twitter." Alternatively, users can choose to see trends that are not tailored for them by selecting a specific trends location on twitter.com, iOS, or Android.
The feud between Trump and Twitter had been going on since the time Twitter added fact-checking labels to the US president's tweet claiming the 2020 elections will be rigged through mail-in ballots. Trump then signed an executive order in May which limits the protections of social media companies such as Twitter, Facebook, and search giant Google over the content on its platforms.
Twitter also labelled tweets in the backdrop of Minneapolis tweets when Trump had written: "Any difficulty and we will assume control, but, when the looting starts, the shooting starts." This infuriated Trump who then tweeted "Revoke 230."
Section 230 is part of a law called the Communications Decency Act, The Independent notes. The law shields any website or service that hosts content such as news outlets' comment sections, video services like YouTube, and social media services like Facebook and Twitter from lawsuits over content posted by users.
In the latest development, The Commerce Department has asked the Federal Communications Commission to write a regulation weakening protections laid out in Section 230, as per a report by Bloomberg. This comes ahead of the antitrust investigation against the big tech companies on July 29.
"Twitter is doing nothing about all of the lies & propaganda being put out by China or the Radical Left Democrat Party. They have targeted Republicans, Conservatives & the President of the United States. Section 230 should be revoked by Congress. Until then, it will be regulated!" Trump had posted.