Fri, 27 Nov 2020

Trump hosts social media summit at White House

12 Jul 2019, 05:01 GMT+10

WASHINGTON, DC - President Donald Trump in a series of tweets on Thursday morning insisted that he could have won the presidency in 2016 without the help of social media. But the president immediately contradicted himself in follow-up tweets claiming that he does not need the mainstream media and that social media is much more important.

"The White House will be hosting a very big and very important Social Media Summit today. Would I have become President without Social Media? Yes (probably)! At its conclusion, we will all go to the beautiful Rose Garden for a News Conference on the Census and Citizenship," the president tweeted.

"A big subject today at the White House Social Media Summit will be the tremendous dishonesty, bias, discrimination and suppression practised by certain companies. We will not let them get away with it much longer," he tweeted.

"The Fake News Media will also be there, but for a limited period. The Fake News is not as important, or as powerful, as Social Media. They have lost tremendous credibility since that day in November 2016, that I came down the escalator with the person who was to become your future First Lady," he added.

"When I ultimately leave office in six years, or maybe 10 or 14 (just kidding), they will quickly go out of business for lack of credibility, or approval, from the public. That's why they will all be Endorsing me at some point, one way or the other. Could you imagine having Sleepy Joe Biden, or @AlfredENeuman99," Trump said.

CNN reported that some of the right-wing media biggies are going to feature in Trump's so-called social media summit at the White House this afternoon. The event will focus on airing claims of anti-conservative social media bias and discrimination.

In addition to inviting leaders from traditional conservative think tanks, such as the Heritage Foundation and Claremont Institute, the White House has requested the presence of far-right Internet personalities and trolls, some of whom have pushed conspiracy theories, lies and misinformation.

The White House has repeatedly declined to release the list of people it expects to attend, but some of the recipients have turned to social media to boast about being invited.

Among them are Bill Mitchell, a radio host who has promoted the extremist QAnon conspiracy theory on Twitter; Carpe Donktum, an anonymous troll who won a contest put on by the fringe media organization InfoWars for an anti-media meme; and Ali Alexander, an activist who attempted to smear Senator Kamala Harris by saying she is not an "American black" following the first Democratic presidential debates.

An administration official further told CNN on Wednesday that the White House had rescinded its invitation to cartoonist Ben Garrison, who had drawn a cartoon widely condemned as anti-Semitic.

It's unclear exactly what will take place at Thursday's summit. The White House has declined to release any information about the event, including a general format of how it will be conducted or what is expected of attendees.

One person who plans to attend spoke to CNN on the condition of anonymity, said, "We're not sure what to expect. We're not sure if it's going to even be about policy.""All I know is there is going to be a bunch of people in a room talking about social media," the person added.

"It could be just more general, it could be vague. You know the president will be there so it could go in a number of different directions," he said. (ANI)

(Image credit: CEO Today).

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