Former White House chief of staff Mark Meadows said Wednesday that a “breakup of Big Tech” is likely to take place following Facebook’s decision to uphold former President Donald Trump’s ban from the social media platform.
According to Meadows, Big Tech has enjoyed a “Wild Wild West kind of regulatory environment.”
“It’s a sad day for America. It’s a sad day for Facebook because I can tell you, a number of members of Congress are now looking at do they break up Facebook? Do they make sure they don’t have a monopoly?” Meadows asked rhetorically on “America’s Newsroom.” “And I can tell you it’s two different standards: one for Donald Trump and one for a number of other people that are on their sites and suggesting more nefarious things than what the president has been accused of actually go unnoticed often.”
In the coming hours, members of Congress are likely to discuss legislation surrounding Facebook’s decision, Meadows said. Although they could go the regulatory route, the former White House chief of staff said Congress is more likely to pass legislation that would “break up” Big Tech monopolies.
“When you look at Google and Facebook, they have more power over what we read and what we see than any in the media,” he said. “… Google and Facebook and YouTube actually control much of what America sees, whether it’s you and I talking right now and it gets reposted on any of those platforms, they have the ability to actually raise that profile or lower it. And so, it is time that we breakup Big Tech, not just regulate it.”
Co-host Bill Hemmer pointed out that the social media giant said they will review the decision in six months, so the ban isn’t technically “forever.”
“Whether it’s six months or six days, what we see in this decision is really about chilling free speech,” Meadows said.
According to the former chief of staff, people on the Left are cheering today’s decision, but they too could fall victim to a similar ban.
“Listen, I’m all about making sure that everyone who wants to have a voice in the public square can do that but we need to have some standards and, literally, what we’re seeing is they’re not able to police themselves and what they’re doing is infringing on constitutional rights that have gotten too big,” Meadows explained. “It’s time that they be [sic] broken up.”
Meadows recognized that businesses have the ability to make their own decisions, especially when it comes to who they allow to utilize their platform. The difference, he said, is “they can’t enjoy the benefits of one, being a monopoly, and two, of not having any litigation that comes against them for any type of discrimination or disparate impact that may result from that,” a reference to Section 230 protections.
As The Daily Wire reported, the Facebook Oversight Board upheld the platform’s ban on Trump. The Board, did, however, say that if a permanent ban is instituted, the company needs to clarify its standards surrounding bans.
“As Facebook suspended Mr. Trump’s accounts ‘indefinitely,’ the company must reassess this penalty,” the board said. “It is not permissible for Facebook to keep a user off the platform for an undefined period, with no criteria for when or whether the account will be restored.”
Facebook has six months to review the Board’s decisions and “policy recommendations.”
— Mark Meadows (@MarkMeadows) May 5, 2021
Author : Beth Baumann