Mexico’s congress about to regulate Social Networks
When President Lopez-Obrador of Mexico (AMLO) heard how Social networks shut down former US President Trump’s accounts, he immediately condemned the act by tech companies. He said tech companies have gone too far, not because AMLO was defending Trump but instead, because the loss of people’s freedoms, and possible installation of some type of “Global Government (due to the global reach social networks have), said AMLO.
The president explained that the actions taken by tech companies seem to indicate a “before and after” of what social networks represented: freedom of expression and a venue for people around the world to communicate and freely inform themselves without the control of media editors.
AMLO pointed out that not allowing the use of social networks to promote violence was a good idea, but that did not mean that tech companies get overreach or exceed the rightful functions that belong to the state.
AMLO explained that governments need to be making those decisions, not private corporations. Soon after, President of Germany, Angela Markel, repeated word by word what Mexico had said a week earlier, followed by the President of France, Emanuel Macron.
Now, AMLO’s party, MORENA, is about to pass a reform to take away the huge power these tech companies have arrogated to themselves in the political arena. Therefore, Mexico’s Senate majority leader, Ricardo Monreal, puts forward legislation to regulate Facebook and Twitter.
Senator Monreal, who proposed the legislation, is seeking public comment. According to the legislator, “the only correct and democratic way to protect freedom of expression in cyberspace is the legislative one, the same for the press, TV, radio, and social networks.”
Currently, Twitter Mexico has been banning some progressive supporters of the Morena party, and similar to accusations of censorship have been reported in the U.S. In fact, the president of Twitter Mexico is a former advisor to ex-president Calderon, currently accused of running a narco government during his administration– with some of his cabinet members already arrested by the FBI and currently in federal prison, such is the case of Garcia Luna, former secretary of security under Calderon accused of working with the Sinaloa cartel and other drug cartels. In other words a corrupt, ex-politician runs Twitter Mexico.
It’s interesting to note that while in the United States, people want congress to regulate the social networks –like Facebook who recently stated they are opening their own court-like system, outside of government regulations– Mexico is getting things done with the only focus on guaranteed civil liberties and freedom of expression and the press..
The Mexican draft bill named Facebook FB.O, which is used by more than 90% of internet users in Mexico, Twitter, YouTube, Instagram and Snapchat are on the list of networks that would be covered by the reform aimed at “establishing the grounds and general principles of the protection of freedom of expression in social networks.” It will also allow users to defend their cases in case of account suspensions.
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