Whatever one chooses to call it — “censorship,” “moderation,” “responsibility” — the online clampdown that we have witnessed in the days since President Trump encouraged a mob to attack the U.S. Capitol has flown directly against both the spirit and the promise of the Internet. Since it was widely adopted in the mid 1990s, a combination of laws, regulations, contracts, and customs has kept the Web extraordinarily free. In 1993, on the eve of its explosion into our lives, the libertarian founder of the Electronic Frontier Foundation, John Gilmore, explained that “the Net interprets censorship as damage and routes around …
This article appears as “What to Do About Twitter?” in the February 8, 2021, print edition of National Review.
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