The Law on Social Networks in Florida: License to Lie?

The Law on Social Networks in Florida: License to Lie?
Fecha de publicación: 
1 June 2021

In another attempt to keep the status quo of Trump’s followers in Florida, the state governor, Ron DeSantis, standing at a platform that read: "STOP CENSORSHIP ON SOCIAL NETWORKS", approved last Monday a law that seeks to sanction platforms that eliminate conservative ideas.

The decree, which comes into effect next July 1st will allow the state to fine large social media companies $250,000 a day if they delete a political candidate's account at the state level and $25,000 a day if they delete an account from someone running locally for a political position.

Protected by nothing less than the Law of Unfair or Deceptive Acts or Practices, the new law, whose signing was held at Florida International University in Miami, will allow technology companies to be sued for $ 100,000 to compensate those residents who report having been treated unfairly.

These sanctions seek to brake, by social networks, the elimination of Republican accounts with conservative ideas and are inspired above all by the exclusion in social networks of former president Donald Trump.

As De Santis explained, while Facebook and Twitter have no qualms about deleting the accounts of former President Donald Trump, they are not doing the same with that of the Iranian Supreme Leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei.

"When you remove the president of the United States from the platform, but allow Grand Ayatollah Khamenei to talk about killing Jews, that's wrong," De Santis said, and his words were met with approval by a flood of applauses.

Apparently, for the governor and his supporters, it’s not "so bad" that the president has incited, through his accounts, the attempted coup that took place on January 6th in the Capitol. Also not "too bad" that, from Florida, characters like Marco Rubio, and Maria Elvira Salazar, spoke lies like the supposed communist "character" of the Democratic party and turned a blind eye to the accusation of false fraud election that removed Trump from the presidency.

It shouldn’t be forgotten that the spokesmen of the anti-Cuban mafia that governs Miami, played -through Facebook, Twitter and Youtube-, a decisive role in the mobilization towards Washington of a good part of the extremist multitude that took the temple of the so-called American democracy.

Likewise, DeSantis's contrast of Trump's censorship with the Iranian leader's alleged impunity is another Floridian-style misconception.

A quick Google search reveals that, in August 2018 alone, Facebook declared that it had removed 652 pages, groups and accounts for inappropriate content, while Twitter suspended the profiles of 284 users, for a total of 936 accounts. Coincidentally, the pages they had decided to close "originated in Iran" and another part, in Russia.

Cuba, like other countries that refuse to bow to the imperial mandate, hasn’t been spared from such "purification." On several occasions, accounts of Cuban institutions, as well as individuals, have been closed, either due to some alleged inappropriate content or due to complaints made precisely from Florida, the epicenter of an excessive media war against the Island that reached its apex during the administration of the liar Donald Trump.

From Florida, via social networks, not only is Cuba reality being manipulated, lies are being told constantly, but also, through the use of real and false accounts are blatantly incited terrorist acts and the subvertion of the constitutional order in Cuba, hate speech that, by the way, neither Twitter nor Facebook nor YouTube seem to have noticed.

As with the recently signed Anti-Riot Law, experts have already pointed out the unconstitutional nature of the new law because it opposes the First Amendment and section 230 of the Communications Decency Act, which gives freedom to private companies to manage their business. And there are those who already condemn the absurd law to failure. Perhaps for this reason, we haven’t had yet news of the reaction, on behalf of the large technology companies, about this kind of license for deception.

Otherwise, we will be facing another attempt to perpetuate the Trumpist propaganda style in that state south of the union and social networks will have no alternative but to oppose to lies and sedition or allow Florida to become the first free-from-the-truth  state in America.

Translated by Amilkal Labañino / CubaSí Translation Staff

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