A federal judge Wednesday said that the President of the United States of America, Donald Trump, cannot block people from following him on the micro blogging platform Twitter. Blocking critics on Twitter for political speech violates their right to free speech under the First Amendment of the US Constitution.
Last year the Trump blocked seven people who criticized him, who in turn sued the Republican president. Trump blocked these individuals from @realDonaldTrump, a 9-year-old Twitter account with over 50 million followers.
US District Judge Naomi Reice Buchwald in Manhattan ruled that the tweets were made in a public forum. “The President presents the @realDonaldTrump account as being a presidential account as opposed to a personal account and, more importantly, uses the account to take actions that can be taken only by the President as President,” the judge said onWednesday.
She suggested that Trump mute the users instead of blocking them. Twitter users can block people, which prevents them from seeing the user’s feed. Alternatively they can mute the person, which keeps the user from seeing that person’s tweets and reply messages in their feed.