WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The chairman of the Federal Communications Commission, Ajit Pai, accused the social media company Twitter Inc ( TWTR.N ) of being politically partial on Tuesday when he defended his plan to back rules designed to guarantee a free and open Internet.
Pai, a Republican appointed by President Donald Trump to head the FCC, unveiled plans last week to eliminate the network's flagship neutrality rules 2015, moving to give broadband service providers more power over what content consumers can access.
"When it comes to an open internet, Twitter is part of the problem," Pai said. "The company has a point of view and uses that point of view to discriminate."
He noted Twitter's refusal to allow Rep. Marsha Blackburn, a Republican, to publicize a campaign video with an anti-abortion message.
"To say the least, the company seems to have a double standard when it comes to suspending or voiding the accounts of conservative users compared to those of liberal users," Pai said.
Twitter did not respond immediately to a request for comments.
Twitter deleted a video of the Blackburn campaign in October, who announced that he would run for the US Senate. UU And he said that a Blackburn comment on opposition to abortion was incendiary. Twitter then reversed its decision.
Pai's criticism comes a day after Twitter and other Internet-based companies, including AirBnb, Reddit, Shutterstock, Inc, Tumblr and Etsy ( ETSY.O ), send a letter urging the FCC to maintain the rules of net neutrality.
Following Pai's comments at an event organized by the R Street Institute of libertarian tendency, two other commissioners of the FCC said they would support their proposal when they vote on December 14.
The proposed reversal has been seen as a win for large Internet service providers such as AT & T Inc ( TN ), Comcast Corp ( CMCSA.O ) and Verizon Communications Inc ( VZ.N ), which favored a revoke.
"Then, when you overcome the wild accusations, fear and hysteria, here is the boring result," Pai said. "The plan to restore Internet freedom would return us to the lightweight tactical approach based on the market in which the Internet prospered."
Information of Diane Bartz and Ginger Gibson; Edition by Jonathan Oatis and Leslie Adler