The executive order charges the FCC with determining whether platforms and search engines are following their content moderation policies in ‘good faith’. If the commissioners believe their policies or enforcement of their policies are deceptive or ‘unfair’, the order recommends stripping them of Section 230 protection - the provision that protects them from liability for content on their platforms - effectively terminating them as viable platforms for user speech.2-3
Full enactment of this order would force every platform on the Internet to pre-screen their rules and policies to ensure they’re judged ‘fair’ by the political appointees of current and future FCC commissions.
The result would be a disaster for our freedom of speech. The rules that govern your posts on your favourite platform could swing around wildly in the political wind when a new government is elected, as they’re tailored to fit that government’s vision of political fairness. And fearful companies might tighten up their rules to exclude most political speech from their platforms, to avoid the appearance of partiality to any speech.
President Trump and Congress must hear loud and clear - we say NO to making the FCC the Internet’s speech police!