Justice Thomas issues opinion suggesting new regulations for social media firms

Conservatives have long complained of apparent discrimination by social media companies, but there has been little in the way of specific legal remedies.

A recent U.S. Supreme Court opinion authored by Justice Clarence Thomas, however, suggests that this might be about to change.

“Historically unprecedented amounts of speech”

According to the Washington Examiner, he wrote a concurrence in which he advocated for changing the way major technology firms in the U.S. are treated under the law.

“Today’s digital platforms provide avenues for historically unprecedented amounts of speech, including speech by government actors,” Thomas wrote. “Also unprecedented, however, is the concentrated control of so much speech in the hands of a few private parties.”

As a result, the longtime jurist wrote that the court “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 went on to note that Twitter was allowed to ban former President Donald Trump from its platform even after Trump himself had been prohibited by a lower court from blocking individual users.

While many on the right celebrated his conclusion, a number of progressive critics expressed concern, including Slate writer Tom Joseph Stern.

“Concentration for free speech”

“Clarence Thomas suggests that social media companies may NOT have a First Amendment right to regulate speech on their platforms, analogizing them to ‘common carriers and places of accommodation,'” he tweeted.

According to Stern, the decision serves as an invitation to “Congress to ban social media companies from engaging in content moderation by stripping them of their own First Amendment rights and transforming them, for legal purposes, into common carries or public accommodations.”

He went on to share his belief that “Thomas’ rallying cry for legislation overriding social media companies’ First Amendment rights and forcing them to host speech is *entirely* about right-wing fears that Twitter, Facebook, etc. are censoring conservative speech.”

U.S. Sen. Josh Hawley (R-MO), on the other hand, touted Thomas’s position in a tweet crediting the justice for addressing “the dangers of [Big Tech] concentration for free speech.”

Republican lawmakers have long backed efforts to rein in the power of social media executives, and Trump frequently bemoaned the situation. In a speech earlier this year, he told supporters in D.C.: “All of these tech monopolies are going to abuse their power and interfere in our elections, and it has to be stopped.”

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10 Responses

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  2. Clarence Thomas is a real Supreme Court judge the rest are going to let the communist party take over our country dictator in the White House election stolen by fraud

  3. I believe TV and radio stations are privately owned, yet they are regulated. Why should Facebook, Twitter and similar social media be different?

  4. Thanks to Judge Thomas for speaking out on issues the rest of the Court seems to have no interest in hearing! What is happening to our Supreme Court?

  5. Agree! Judge Thomas is a true jurist! He upholds the constitution! He should be in the Chief justices chair, not turncoat Roberts!

  6. The Supreme Court has let down America.

    Clarence Thomas is a true judge, the rest of the judges should start
    doing their job, especially the most recent judges that were appointed
    not to long ago.

  7. Clarence thomas would be a good president because he is impartial and abides by the constitution. A true supreme court jurist of law and order.

  8. I could not believe that election could be stolen in USA. It was a shock for me. I know that could be done in third world country but not here.
    There should be a way to protect the integrity of the election and never let that happen again.
    Suggestion: Use a mark or a sign: Use blue ink for Democrats voters and red ink for Republicans. Make sure that ink could only be removed after 2 days of voting. Election inspectors to take oath before working and polices should watch the count at voting places to make sure that both parties are treated equally.

  9. Supreme Court Justice should have been appointed as the Chief Justice, and not Roberts. Roberts continues to break his oath defending the U.S. Constitution! In my opinion, Chief Justice Roberts is nothing more than a criminal supporting the Leftist movement!

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