The US government has been instructed to reduce its interaction with IT companies.

A federal judge in the United States has placed restrictions on the Biden administration’s ability to communicate with social media companies about content moderation.

Judge Terry Doughty issued a 155-page judgment on Tuesday prohibiting the White House and other government agencies from contacting businesses over “content containing protected free speech.”

For Republicans who have charged government personnel with censorship, this is a huge win.

The Democrats have complained that the platforms do not do enough to combat disinformation.

One of the most watched First Amendment cases in US courts, the case sparked a discussion about the government’s ability to censor information it believed to be inaccurate or detrimental.

The US Department of Justice is currently studying the verdict and determining its future moves, according to the White House.

The White House said in a statement, “Our consistent view remains that social media platforms have a critical responsibility to take account of the effects their platforms are having on the American people.”

It went on to say that services must “make independent choices about the information they present.”

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The verdict came after a complaint filed by Republican attorneys general in Missouri and Louisiana claimed that US officials compelled social media platforms to remove or modify content relating to themes including Covid-19 rules and election security.

The plaintiffs “presented substantial evidence in support of their claims,” Judge Doughty, who was appointed by former US President Donald Trump, ruled.

“Evidence produced thus far depicts an almost dystopian scenario,” Mr. Doughty said in his ruling.

When asked to elaborate, he said, “During the Covid-19 pandemic, a period perhaps best characterized by widespread doubt and uncertainty, the United States Government seems to have assumed a role similar to an Orwellian ‘Ministry of Truth.'”

The verdict restricted the ability of federal entities like the FBI and the Department of Health and Human Services to communicate with one another.

Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency Director Jen Easterly and DHS Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas were also subject to the ban.

For the purpose of alerting businesses to potential threats to national security and criminal activities, however, the law created an exception.

Several e-mails between White House officials and social media corporations were also mentioned by Judge Doughty.

Included in this was an email sent to Google workers in April 2021 from former White House director of digital strategy Rob Flaherty.

Mr. Flaherty wrote in an email that YouTube, owned by Google, was “funneling” people into vaccine skepticism.

When he said, “This is a concern that is shared at the highest (and I mean highest) levels of the WH,” he meant it.

A request for comment from the BBC was met with silence from Google.

Elon Musk, who owns the social media company Twitter, did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Meanwhile, Instagram and Facebook parent company Meta has remained silent on the verdict.

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