The First Amendment is first for a reason. But can it restrict what you don’t say to people to whom you don’t speak?
“Judge Thwarts Trump’s Twitter Exclusion,” The Wall Street Journal, May 24, 2018 A4. Federal judge rules that public officials can’t restrict who can see their personal Twitter feeds.
The First Amendment says “Congress shall make no law …abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press ….” Is blocking someone from a Twitter feed a law made by Congress?
But leave looking at the words aside for the moment. Assuming this ruling is affirmed, will this improve or restrict the free flow of information? Hasn’t the judge just abridged the freedom of speech of public officials, by requiring that what they say in a tweet be available to all?
Implications from Governance (What are the Rules, and who makes them?), Information (Who owns the information in your Twitter feed?), and Compliance (Did the judge anticipate how this would apply to all public officials? Did the judge just make a law?).