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President Trump will hold a social media summit on Thursday with some of his biggest supporters and lawmakers. Facebook and Twitter would have been excluded from the summit.
This comes at a time when the president, an enthusiastic user of social media – including Twitter that he often deploys to rally his base – has criticized social media platforms, accusing them of silencing those who support him.
A guest, a Twitter user who passes CarpeDonktum, said that when he received the email invitation to the White House, he thought that it could act as spam.
He asked that we retain his real name. He says he fears retaliation against his family.
In Kansas, the homemaker is a celebrity in the conservative world of social media – with more than one hundred thousand subscribers on Twitter. (His nickname is a game on the Latin phrase Carpe Diem – means to seize the day. CarpeDonktum, grab the donkey, refers to the Democrats.)
He is a prolific creator of pro-Trump images and videos mocking the left, tweeting him. Many of his parodies have been re-tweeted by the president.
CarpeDonktum has announced his invitation on Twitter.
The White House kept silence on the guest list. But it seems to be made up of Trump Twitterverse, conservative social media personalities who gravitate around Trump's Twitter star.
And yet, Trump attacked those same social media platforms that were key to its success.
"You're watching Google, Facebook, Twitter and other social media giants, and I've made it clear that our country can not tolerate political censorship, blacklists, and rigged search results," he said. the president last year.
In May, Facebook banned several well-known media personalities from the social media sector for violating their policy against violent hate speech, including right-wing conspiracy theorist Alex Jones, extremists Milo Yiannopoulos, Laura Loomer, and Joseph Watson, who works for InfoWars; White supremacist Paul Nehlen, who unsuccessfully presented to Congress in 2016 and 2018. The platform also banned Jones' company, Infowars, as well as Nation of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan.
Twitter had already banned many of these personalities.
Google, Facebook and Twitter all deny censoring the Conservatives on their platforms, but many conservatives do not believe it.
Conservative talk show host Bill Mitchell is one of them. He blames Twitter's algorithm so that some of his subscribers can not see his tweets. He will attend Thursday's social media summit, and he hopes they'll talk about how social media has become the modern public square and the responsibilities that flow from it.
"If you become public, you really have to offer First Amendment protections to people," Mitchell told NPR. "Where everyone can have a free and open speech, let's start the debate and let the best win."
Angelo Carusone, Media Matters Media Monitoring Group chairman, believes in freedom of expression, but he says that some of the guests at the top alarming. "There are some actors on the scene there, but for the most part, they are extreme right-wing extremists and many people who have ties to white nationalism."
Mitchell and CarpeDonktum have disavowed racism to NPR.
But Media Matters points to other guests. Such as Charlie Kirk Turning Point USA, an organization accused of racist views.
Carusone says that the social media summit is a calculated political movement on the part of the Trump administration. He says that it validates the views of the far right. "The normalization of this is the part that concerns me."
As the president rallies his base before the 2020 elections, Carusone questions the consequences of raising these right votes.