Ethereum co-founder Vitalik Buterin has published a statement on Donald Trump’s social media ban on Twitter. In it he criticizes the tech giants going it alone and sees an attack on freedom of expression.
In a Twitter thread, Vitalik Buterin condemned Donald Trump’s ban on various social media platforms
The US president was initially banned from Twitter for twelve hours after the indirect call to storm the Capitol. Then the temporary ban became a permanent one. Other social networks such as YouTube, Reddit or Facebook followed Twitter’s example and also removed Trump from their platforms. Buterin is critical of this step. The uproar in Washington was terrible and people who still supported Donald Trump were crazy. Nevertheless, the Ethereum co-founder wants to get rid of a few things that „have not yet been addressed“.
He finds it frightening that people who would normally never support such corporate power are now cheering tech CEOs who defied democratically elected officials. This requires a certain amount of self-examination. According to Vitalik Buterin, the Twitter ban is an asset for the separation of powers, as two centers of power ensure that if one breaks, the other can step in for the failure. He was bothered by the fact that Jack Dorsey, who was not elected by vote, violated the principles of liberal democracy.
After Trump was blocked, Twitter published a statement in which the short message service justified its action. The Ethereum co-founder took this up and wrote:
There are huge flaws in jacktatorship today. A big one is: You (the measure, editor’s note) is not “legal” enough. The Twitter Safety Supreme Court opinion is frankly poorly argued and reads like an ex-post justification.
Credible neutrality as a solution?
As a solution, Vitalik linked Buterin to a website that proposes the concept of “credible neutrality”. According to this, a mechanism would try to treat all participants fairly, although this is not always easy as people’s needs are different. However, it is not enough just to have such a system. It is also crucial to convince people of the fairness of the mechanism.