Despite global condemnation for US President Donald Trump's role in inciting the mob that stormed the US Capitol on January 6, leaders from France and Germany have opposed the move of social media platforms-in particular the President's favourite, Twitter-to evict him from their platforms.
"The right to freedom of opinion is of fundamental importance", said Steffen Seibert, Merkel's chief spokesman on Monday. Completely blocking out views by halting the account is a step too far, the spokesman says, but backs action taken by social media in recent months to flag false claims.More news: Riot Releases New Valorant Cinematic Trailer For Episode 2: Formation
According to Seibert, companies should only intervene in freedom of expression "along the laws and within the framework defined by the legislature". "Given that, the chancellor considers it problematic that the president's accounts have been permanently suspended".
"I would say to the owners of Twitter, if you're going to take down the comments of who is still the American president you need to think also about the photo, the doctored image, which shows a soldier, supposedly an Australian digger, with a child in his arms, about to do harm to that child", McCormack said.
Edward Snowden was among the first to raise his voice against the perceived stifling of free of speech by the social media giants, after Facebook announced it would block Trump from posting until the end of his term.More news: World champion Tetris Jonas Neubauer dies at 39
Big Tech acquiesced, and by Friday night, Twitter had permanently banned Trump, Facebook and Instagram suspended him indefinitely, and Snapchat disabled his account.
Following the riots at the U.S. Capitol last week, activists put extreme pressure on social media companies to ban President Donald Trump - and some of his supporters - from their platforms.
Chancellor Merkel's critical comments join those of Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador, who slammed Twitter, Facebook and others for de-platforming the US leader.More news: Capitol Police officer who responded to attack has died