Trump is inviting his favorite right-wing meme maker and an alt-right cartoonist to a social media summit where Twitter and Facebook are barred
- President Trump is expected to host a number of controversial right-wing media personalities at the White House Thursday for a social media summit.
- Social media giants Facebook and Twitter will not be represented at the event.
- President Trump has in recent months accused social media companies of censoring right-wing voices on the platforms, an accusation both Facebook and Twitter deny.
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President Donald Trump is facing criticism for hosting controversial right-wing social media personalities and propagandists at a media summit at the White House Thursday that will feature no representation from Twitter or Facebook.
Some of those attending have posted copies of their invites on Twitter, including a pro-Trump activist known as Carpe Donktum, who creates bizarre memes mocking the president's opponents and praising the president.Trump has shared several of Carpe Donktum's videos on Twitter, including posts trolling Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden over allegations of inappropriate touching, and another mocking Democrats for their reactions to Trump's State of the Union address.
Among others who have announced their invitation to attend are Ben Garrison, whose cartoon of former national security adviser HR McMaster was denounced as "blatantly anti-Semitic" by the Anti-Defamation league, and right-wing conspiracy theorist and internet personality Bill Mitchell.
Mitchell has supported the "Q Anon" conspiracy theory alleging that senior Democrats abuse children and are engaged in a clandestine plot to unseat Trump.
According to liberal media watchdog Media Matters, also in attendance will be representatives from right-wing organisations including Prager University, which produces controversial videos on topics including abortion, Islam and gun rights from a right-wing perspective.
Dennis Prager, the founder of the channel, is currently embroiled in a legal battle with YouTube and Google, which he accuses of censoring his material.In a statement to the Washington Post, White House spokesman Judd Deere said the administration decided to convene the conference because "thousands" of Americans across the political spectrum are being affected by online bias. He said Trump "wants to engage directly with these digital leaders in a discussion on the power of social media."
The White House did not immediately respond to a request for a full list of attendees from Business Insider.
Last week, CNN reported that social media giants including Facebook and Twitter have not been invited to the summit. President Trump has in recent tweets accused the companies of censoring conservative voices.
In recent months far-right activists including conspiracy theorist Alex Jones and troll Milo Yiannopoulos have been removed from platforms for allegedly promoting hate speech, as social media companies come under pressure to halt the spread of violent content and disinformation.
The president himself has been accused of breaching Twitter's rules by using the platform to insult enemies, and in June the platform said it would begin labelling tweets by the president and other politicians that break its rules. Tweets will not be deleted, however.
Social media companies have repeatedly denied accusations of political bias against Trump.
According to research by Axios published Wednesday, the most popular stories on social media about the Democratic presidential candidates in 2020 are generally published by right-wing media outlets.