History Tells Us Social Media Regulation Is Inevitable

As policymakers around the world grapple with regulating social media, it seems increasingly likely that the question is not whether social media will face government intervention, but just how consequential those interventions will be. Today’s social titans hail largely from the United States, with its longstanding primacy of near-absolute freedom of speech. As those platforms have evolved into our global town squares, impacting nearly every country on earth, they have become modern lightning rods for the global tension between America’s historical adherence to communicative freedoms compared with the harsh restrictions of the rest of the world. A closer look at America’s own history of communications regulation suggests it is almost inevitable that social platforms will eventually be regulated.

The United States stands almost alone among major nations in the degree of primacy it affords the basic right of its citizens to speak whatever is on their mind.

Government may not intervene to silence its critics. No matter how loudly a citizen criticizes their elected officials, so long as those statements are true or a matter of opinion, that citizen as the right to air their grievances.

Similarly, no matter how abhorrent or outside of societal mainstream one’s thoughts, with few exceptions one has the right to stand in a public park and share those thoughts with others.

Read more of this Forbes article by Kalev Leetaru by clicking here.