Former US President Donald Trump filed a complaint on Wednesday, July 7, accusing Facebook, Twitter, Google and their owners of being responsible for “illegal, unconstitutional censorship”.
“I, as the principal representative, are filing a major class action lawsuit against tech giants including Facebook, Google and Twitter, as well as their owners Mark Zuckerberg, Sundar Pichai and Jack Dorsey”, of the billionaire at his club golf course. declare. , new Jersey.
“We are asking the Federal Court for the Southern District of Florida to order an immediate end to illegal and shameful censorship by social media groups targeting Americans,” he explained. The former US president said this would be the first in a series of “many” other lawsuits aimed at taking “big tech” into account. We are engaged in a fight that we are going to win, ”he promised in front of an audience of guests.
The real estate mogul has been the source of many lawsuits during his career. He was kicked out by social network Twitter on January 6 after a deadly attack on the Capitol during the certification ceremony of his rival Joe Biden’s victory.
Before being banned, Donald Trump had around 89 million followers on Twitter as well as 35 million on Facebook and 24 million on Instagram.
On these platforms, he notably minimized the seriousness of the pandemic and denounced so-called electoral fraud, never demonstrated in court.
“Google and YouTube have deleted countless videos that dare to question the decision of the World Health Organization” during the COVID-19 pandemic, the former president lamented on Wednesday.
This complaint is unlikely to succeed, according to legal experts, at least that’s what Eric Goldman, a law professor specializing in high-tech at Santa Clara University, is “convinced Trump will lose.” “The First Amendment to the US Constitution, which defends freedom of expression, only bars public actors, not private organizations,” he told AFP, “Based on these 61 files, I believe Trump will lose. ”
what if it was rather A publicity stunt?
To Matt Schruers, president of the tech giant CCIA lobby, “actions of the trivial class won’t change the fact that users, even presidents of the United States, must abide by the rules they agree to.” “This complaint is a publicity stunt and it is unlikely that it will proceed in the courts,” said Jamil Jaffer, head of the “Knight First Amendment Institute” center specializing in protecting freedom of expression at Columbia University. He said, however, that it was “important” to debate “what kind of obligations the First Amendment might impose on private actors who have as much influence on public discourse” as social media.
If it is specifically American conservatives who are opposed to the ouster of Donald Trump from the social network, the Democrats have tech giants as well.