Students React To Social Media Platform Bans

In the wake of Kanye West’s ban from Twitter Dec. 2, we asked students to share their thoughts on the practice of banning free speech


Image by Thomas Ulrich from Pixabay

Online social media companies take action against hate speech and misinformation by banning users and removing posts. 

In light of recent social media bans, including the Dec. 1 ban of rapper Ye from Twitter for inciting violence, students share their thoughts on the banning of users from social media.

Social media companies such as Twitter, Instagram and Facebook are perceived as private companies. For this reason, social media companies have the discretion to limit what users post without violating the First Amendment. 

Although it is legal to limit posts and ban users, some students feel uncomfortable with the decision.

“No type of speech should be banned. We have an amendment that gives us a right to freedom of speech,” senior Lars Uhland said. “Whether it’s bashing the government or praising something, it should be able to stay up on the platform.”

Senior Owen Williams shares the same sentiment.

“I am not a big fan of it to be honest,” Williams said. “I feel like we are living in the land of the free. We got freedom of speech, and you should be able to say what you want and not have to care about what people think.”

Other students feel that limiting posts and banning users is necessary in some cases.

“I think it’s good because social media should be a platform where people don’t cause problems,” senior Kaleb Enright said. “I would say that people who say racial and homophobic slurs should be banned from social media.”

Sophomore Grace Gerhold agrees.

“I don’t think people should be banned for sharing their opinions or beliefs unless they’re threatening to hurt someone and things like that,” Gerhold said.

Freshman Matthew Smith believes people should be careful of what they post.

“I think people need to be cautious with what they say, but they obviously have a freedom of speech, but they also have freedom to get in trouble for what they say,” Smith said.

In light of the banning of high-profile celebrities on social media, such as Kanye West and Donald Trump, students suggest that celebrities should be careful about what they post, too.

“I think that they should be allowed to ban people on social media if they are spreading harmful messages,” senior Ella Bowman said. “Celebrities have a huge influence on how people think and act and if they are influencing hate, they should be shut down before anything bad happens.”