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Trump sues Facebook, Twitter, Google after social media ban – Financial Post

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Without access to the broad reach afforded by social media giants, Trump has struggled to maintain an online presence

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Former President Donald Trump sued Facebook Inc., Twitter Inc., Alphabet Inc.’s Google and their chief executives, raising the stakes in his battle against social media giants who have blocked him.

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Billing the effort during a Wednesday press conference as a move to defend First Amendment rights, Trump filed three separate class-action lawsuits in federal court in Florida against the tech giants and Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg, Twitter’s Jack Dorsey and Google’s Sundar Pichai.

The lawsuits seek court orders to restore his social-media accounts, along with punitive damages, to ensure other users can’t be banned or flagged by the tech giants. The legal team is being led by John P. Coale, a trial attorney involved in lawsuits against big tobacco companies.

“We’re going to hold big tech very accountable,” Trump said during the press conference at his Trump National Golf Club Bedminster in New Jersey. “If they can do it to me, they can do it to anyone.”

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Twitter permanently banned Trump in January for his role in stoking the mob that attacked the U.S. Capitol Jan. 6 in a deadly riot to stop the counting of Electoral College votes for President Joe Biden. Facebook last month said Trump would remain suspended from its networks for at least two years, with the possibility of being reinstated in 2023 if risk to public safety has subsided.

YouTube, Google’s giant video service, also froze Trump’s account following the Jan. 6 riot. The former president’s videos are still accessible, but he isn’t permitted to post new videos. Susan Wojcicki, YouTube’s chief executive, has said that the company will reverse its policy when it decides that the “risk of violence has decreased,” without providing details.

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Facebook, Google and Twitter declined to comment on the suits, which were criticized by tech-funded advocacy groups. NetChoice, whose members include Amazon and other tech companies, said the action shows a “deliberate misunderstanding of the First Amendment” and is without merit.

“President Trump has no case,” NetChoice CEO Steve DelBianco said in a release. “The First Amendment is designed to protect the media from the President, not the other way around.”

President Trump has no case. The First Amendment is designed to protect the media from the President, not the other way around

NetChoice CEO Steve DelBianco

Trump is seeking to overturn a federal law that shields internet companies from liability for content posted by users. Section 230 of the 1996 Communications Decency Act protects social media platforms from lawsuits accusing them of unfairly removing posts or accounts, among other legal challenges. The First Amendment prohibits the government from forcing tech companies to leave up or take down certain categories of posts.

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In the lawsuits, Trump argues the liability protections under Section 230 means social media companies should be considered government actors that can be sued.

The banishment of Trump by major tech platforms reignited Republican calls to revoke the legal shield, arguing that it has enabled social media platforms such as Facebook and Twitter to censor conservative viewpoints.

The lawsuits aren’t the first time Trump has taken aim at Section 230. While in office, he tried to get Congress to repeal Section 230 by threatening to veto a Defense Department spending bill. Democrats have also proposed bills to curtail the legal shield to encourage tech companies to more aggressively rid their platforms of bigotry, abuse, and harassment.

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Tech companies have largely resisted changes to the law, fearing that the proliferation of lawsuits will force them to clamp down on the free-flowing user-generated content. However, both Zuckerberg and Dorsey have expressed openness in recent months to Section 230 reforms.

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Without access to the broad reach afforded by social media giants, Trump has struggled to maintain an online presence. He shut down his blog-like “From the Desk of Donald J. Trump,” though he frequently sends out several press statements a day — often targeting fellow Republicans he believes are insufficiently loyal.

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Trump recently stepped up his public activity by restarting rallies and making a trip to the southern U.S. border last week to criticize Biden’s immigration policies. He’s backing candidates in the 2022 midterm elections and actively opposing others. He has also held out the prospect of running again for president in 2024.

The former president has been teasing that he’ll launch a new platform that can’t remove him. He said on Dave Rubin’s “Rubin Report” podcast on June 25 that “there’s a lot of platforms out there, that’s what we’re looking at, getting the right platform, a perfect platform, and I think you’ll see something fairly soon.”

During his presidency, Trump used Twitter for everything from insulting rivals to major policy announcements, and he relied on Facebook especially to raise money from small-dollar donors.

A Florida law prohibiting social media platforms from suspending the accounts of political candidates was blocked by a federal judge earlier this month. Likening the state’s law to “burning the house to roast a pig,” U.S. District Judge Robert Hinkle in Tallahassee said the legislation passed by a Republican legislature and a priority of Governor Ron DeSantis, violates the companies’ free speech rights.

The case is Trump et al v Twitter Inc et al, 21-cv-22441, U.S. District Court, Southern District of Florida (Miami).

Bloomberg.com

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Media Advisory: Premier Furey to Announce Additional Measure to Address Recruitment and Retention of Physicians – News Releases – Government of Newfoundland and Labrador

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The Honourable Andrew Furey, Premier of Newfoundland and Labrador, will announce an additional measure to address recruitment and retention of physicians today (Tuesday, August 16) at 2:15 p.m.

He will be joined by the Honourable Tom Osborne, Minister of Health and Community Services, Dr. Sohaib Al-Asaaed, Post Graduate Medical Education Associate Dean, and Dr. Mikaela Murphy, a second-year family medicine resident.

The availability will take place in Room M5M101, Faculty of Medicine, St. John’s Campus, Memorial University.

The availability will be streamed live on Facebook.

– 30 –

Media contacts
Meghan McCabe
Office of the Premier
709-729-3960
meghanmccabe@gov.nl.ca

Laura Thomas
Health and Community Services
709-729-6986, 727-0341
laurathomas@gov.nl.ca

2022 08 16
9:10 am

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Media Release – August 16, 2022 – Guelph Police – Guelph Police Service

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Male arrested in theft of watches

A Guelph male has been charged in connection with the theft of more than a dozen watches during a break and enter last month.

Police were called July 6 to a business in the area of Silvercreek Parkway North and Woodlawn Road West. An employee had arrived to work to find a rear window smashed. Approximately 12 to 15 watches each valued at $150 were stolen.

A suspect was identified through surveillance video and arrested Sunday morning. A 66-year-old Guelph male is charged with break and enter. He will appear in a Guelph court September 23, 2022.

Arrest made following assault

A Guelph male faces assault and weapons charges after another male was attacked in the parking lot of a south-end business.

On July 9 two males known to each other were involved in a verbal altercation in a parking lot on Stone Road West. During the altercation one of the males was struck twice in the head with an object believed to be a flashlight. This caused a laceration which required stitches.

A suspect was identified and on Monday turned himself in to the Guelph Police Service. A 26-year-old Guelph male is charged with assault with a weapon, possessing a weapon for a dangerous purpose and failing to comply with probation. He will appear in bail court Wednesday.

Gassing up stolen car leads to charges

A Cambridge male who pumped gas into a stolen car in Guelph has been arrested.

On June 2, a male attended a gas station on Speedvale Avenue West driving a stolen Kia SUV. He pumped more than $49 in gas and attempted to pay using several prepaid credit cards, but was only able to cover $7.28 of the cost. The male said he would get another credit card from the vehicle but instead sped away without paying the remaining amount.

The male was identified via surveillance video and arrested Monday.

A 37-year-old Cambridge male is charged with possessing stolen property over $5,000, theft under $5,000, occupying a stolen motor vehicle and driving while suspended. He will appear in bail court Tuesday.

Total calls for service in the last 24 hours – 206

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Media are invited to attend the Mentor-Apprentice Program workshop in Yellowknife on August 17 – Government of Northwest Territories

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The Government of the Northwest Territories (GNWT) is hosting a training workshop for Mentor-Apprentice Program (MAP) participants in Yellowknife. Media are invited to attend the last workshop taking place in the Yellowknife area, where they can experience the language program firsthand and talk to MAP participants and organizers with the Indigenous Languages and Education Secretariat.

The session will take place:

Yellowknife – Dene Kedǝ, Dëne Sųłıné, Dene Zhatıé and Tłı̨chǫ languages

Location: Aurora Tours.net /Aurora Teepee Lodge (Ingraham Trail – KM 12.4)

Date: August 17, 2022

Time: 10:15 -11:45 am

To attend one of the sessions, please RSVP to ecepublicaffairs@gov.nt.ca. High-resolution photos will be provided upon request for media use.

MAP is a way of learning a language where a fluent speaker of the language (a Mentor) teaches a language learner (an Apprentice) through immersion. The goal of the program is to have Apprentices improve their ability to understand and speak their language and help with the revitalization of Indigenous languages in the Northwest Territories.

For media requests, please contact:

ecepublicaffairs@gov.nt.ca

Public Affairs and Communications

Department of Education, Culture and Employment

Government of the Northwest Territories

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