Trump, the Capitol, and Social Media – Let our expert answer the questions everyone is asking
· 2 min. read
Social media played a significant role in the storming of the U.S. Capitol, and its influence in shaping American politics is unlikely to wane, says UConn's Marie Shanahan.
And that’s why UConn recently published a piece where Professor Shanahan took on a lot of the trickier questions people are asking in the wake of the storming of the U.S. Capitol on January 6.
In a piece just published – she addresses these key questions:
- While obscure social media platforms like Parler, Gab, and Telegram have gotten a lot of attention recently as gathering places for the kinds of far-right activists who were instrumental in what happened at the Capitol, most of the planning for that event seems to have taken place in the open, on sites like Facebook and Twitter. To what extent was this event a product of social media?
- It’s hard to talk about Donald Trump’s presidency without talking about social media. What might change now that he seems to have been permanently banned from the most popular platforms?
- Speaking of that deplatforming, even though Facebook and Twitter can ban any user who violates their terms of service, is there some validity to the argument that in doing so they’re restricting free speech?
- What kinds of things can be done to address some of these problems in how the public discourse is shaped? Is repealing Section 230 actually a good idea?
The piece is attached and it is an insightful must-read for anyone following these developments.
Professor Shanahan is an expert in the intersection of journalism and digital communication technology, online news, and digital discourse. If you are a journalist looking to cover this topic and would like to arrange an interview with Professor Shanahan – simply click on her icon now to arrange a time to talk today.