RUSH: Mark Zuckerberg of Facebook was on Fox yesterday afternoon. He was on the Dana Perino show, and he said that he disagreed with Twitter fact-checking President Trump. He said, “We have a different policy, I think, than Twitter on this. So I just believe strongly Facebook should not be the arbiter of truth of everything that people say online.
“I think in general private companies probably shouldn’t be in the position of doing that.” But Facebook fact-checks too. Facebook even has a page that explains how their fact-check system works, and Facebook exiles people they don’t like. They even label them as “haters.” Facebook has put mainstream conservatives like Candace Owens on a hate agent’s review list.
When Zuckerberg says this stuff, nobody points this kind of thing out to him. Now, of course, he’s taking the occasion of disagreeing with Dorsey. And, folks, I want to tell you again: A lot of people are picking up on a point that I shared with you yesterday that Marco Rubio made, and that is that Twitter may have seriously stepped in it by doing this, because they have crossed the boundary line now from simply providing a service to being a content provider.
When they do that, they open themselves up to liability. It’s one thing for Twitter to just be an empty vessel and all of its content be determined by what its users say, but not of what Twitter itself says. But if they’re gonna introduce fact-checking, that means they are going to be responsible for content on the site, and that opens them up to liability.
There’s a piece that ran at Hot Air today. “Twitter Is Digging Its Own Grave,” ’cause once they start tagging some tweets and not others with “what you need to know” or “fact checks,” then they’re gonna be staking out partisan positions — and that’s exactly what they’ve done with Trump. They are staking out a partisan position, and it’s gonna cause them big trouble because some lawyers are gonna spot this as a grand opening to go after ’em to make them liable.
You know, Facebook and Twitter both hide behind the fact that, “Hey, we’re private companies. We’re not bound by the constitutional limits on free speech or any of that. We can demand people behave however we want them to here.” But once they cross this line, then they open themselves up to liability problems that they may not have considered. We’ll see if this holds up, and we’ll see if the way Dorsey gets around it is to start fact-checking liberal Democrats at the same time.