Former president Donald Trump announced his class-action lawsuit against Big Tech. Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube banned his accounts after inciting the January 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol. The lawsuit calls for:
- Declaring Big Tech as “a state actor” for infringing on Trump’s First Amendment right.
- Declaring Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act as unconstitutional.
- The reinstatement of Trump’s banned accounts.
- And unspecified punitive damages.
Here’s why the Trump Big Tech lawsuit will fail.
THE FIRST AMENDMENT
The lawsuit wants a judge to declare Big Tech as “a state actor” for infringing on Trump’s First Amendment right. The U.S. Constitution is a contract between the government and the people. The Supreme Court ruled that corporations are people in 2010. That would include Big Tech.
People claiming that Big Tech infringed on their First Amendment right got it wrong. Only the government can infringe on someone’s constitutional rights. Without the intervention of a friendly judge, Trump has no legal standing to sue Big Tech. That’s why legal experts are declaring the lawsuit dead on arrival.
“No provider or user of an interactive computer service shall be treated as the publisher or speaker of any information provided by another information content provider.”Section 230, Communications Decency Act of 1996
Which means that Big Tech has legal liability protection from what their users post on their platforms. If someone doesn’t like what someone else posted on Facebook, they can’t sue Facebook in a court of law.
It’s very unlikely that a court would find Section 230 unconstitutional. If they did, Big Tech could shut down their U.S. operations to avoid legal liability. Americans would have to use VPN to access Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube from outside of the U.S. Something many international users do to access Big Tech outside of their country.
That’s not a far fetch scenario.
Big Tech threatened to quit Hong Kong if a new anti-doxing law leaves their employees at risk for criminal charges. Granted that Hong Kong is a city-state inside China with a small population. Big Tech could be big enough to ditch the U.S. market and continue on with a world-wide user base.
FOLLOW THE MONEY
What’s the real reason behind the Trump Big Tech lawsuit? When it comes to conservative politics, you must follow the money. Trump and Republican fundraisers cashed in immediately after filing the lawsuit. Never mind that none of that money will go towards the lawsuit.
We’ve seen this before.
Over 60 lawsuits filed across the U.S. after the 2020 presidential election. Most of the money going to Trump and the Republican National Committee. All the lawsuits failed to overturn the election result. No amount of money would have change that.
The Trump Big Tech lawsuit is another money grab.
What if the Trump Big Tech lawsuit gets a day in court?
That could put Trump into a difficult position during the sworn deposition proceedings. Big Tech would ask him questions about the January 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol. He would be stepping into a legal trap of his own making that would be worse than the court dismissing his lawsuit.