After Twitter, Snapchat has become the latest social media company to crack down on US President, Donald Trump. According to a report by the New York Times (NYT), the company has decided that it will stop highlighting Trump’s posts through its Discover page, which enables users to browse content on Snapchat. Trump’s account though will remain intact in every other way.
“We will not amplify voices who incite racial violence and injustice by giving them free promotion on Discover,” Rachel Racused, a spokeswoman for Snap, the company that runs Snapchat, told the NYT. “It is no secret that our country has put businesses first. We at Snap have been tremendous beneficiaries of these policies, but I believe now it is time to put the American people first,” the company’s CEO, Evan Spiegel, wrote in a memo to employees which was posted on the company’s website too.
Snap is the second social media firm to take action against President Trump’s posts on its platform. Earlier, Twitter had placed warning labels on three of Trump’s tweets, citing misinformation and a propensity to incite violence. Twitter had said that the President’s tweets violated the company’s guidelines for the platform.
However, while Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey and Snap CEO, Evan Spiegel have defended their moves, there are people who are against them too. Notably, Mark Zuckerberg, CEO of Facebook, had admonished Twitter for placing fact-checking labels on Trump’s posts saying that social media companies shouldn’t be the “arbiter of truth”. Zuckerberg himself has had to face backlash because of the same, as many Facebook employees staged a virtual walkout in order to push the executive to take action against the President’s posts.
President Trump had also recently signed an Executive Order, which weakens the provisions under Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act in the US. This provides liability protection to social media companies for posts that users make on them. Trump’s new order said that if a social media firm intervened in posts, they will be giving up this protection.