A spanish political party announced they are suing Twitter in Spain and United States for violation of freedom of speech after an account of them was banned. Details of which arguments are going to use werent disclosed, but I just remembered United States president was forbidden by an United States court to ban Twitter followers because his account was a government account and that would be a violation of freedom of speech to the followers. Could a social network be sued for violation of freedom of speech with the same argument, that they can't ban a government account because that hurts the freedom of speech of the citizens of a country?

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    Twitter is a private company (well, a public one, but not government owned). They don't have to grant you a platform for your free speech and don't have any obligation to uphold that law (in the US). The presidential account is different, it cannot ban people from following/commenting because it is a governmental outlet using a publicly accessible forum.
    – Ron Beyer
    Jan 30, 2020 at 16:01
  • Are you asking just from a US law perspective? Jan 30, 2020 at 18:44
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    Daily reminder that the 1st Amendment of the US Constitution starts with: Congress shall make no law ...
    – user253751
    Jan 30, 2020 at 18:44

1 Answer 1


In a democratic country, they cannot be sued successfully. Freedom of speech is for the citizens, not the government. And it is a company doing the banning, not the government. So the situation is totally different in two significant ways.

(That assumes laws not too different from the USA. Obviously a country might have laws that make it illegal for companies not to publish what a political party says).

  • Also, even with the right to freedom of speech, not even the UN definition requires a third party to give you a platform from which to speak.
    – user28517
    Jan 30, 2020 at 22:16
  • Being citizens or the government is kind of irrelevant isnt it? Government officials are also citizens so where is the difference there. IIRC, the court ruling said for government officials the twitter account was no longer a twitter account, but a public forum. That doesnt change regardless who is doing the banning. It's either a public forum or it is not
    – Pablo
    Jan 31, 2020 at 0:14
  • @Pablo There is a distinction between a what person does as a private individual and what someone does as a public official. Jan 31, 2020 at 3:59

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