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Mississippi ACLU threatens State Senator Joel Carter over official Facebook page | Mississippi Politics and News

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The Mississippi ACLU sent a letter of formal notice on behalf of a Madison County resident to Gulf Coast State Senator Joel Carter for prohibiting any person from commenting on his official Facebook page.

The incident happened after the Madison County resident made regular and aggressive comments on Carter’s officials, according to Carter. Carter made the decision to ban the user on August 6 and received the following letter from ACLU from Mississippi Legal Director Joshua Tom on August 12.

ACLU inquiry letter Joel Carter from yallpolitics

Since then, Carter has hired the user again and she will continue to comment on Carter’s official Facebook page from Sunday, August 15.

This incident further underscores the interesting considerations about commenting on official Facebook pages. This follows the ACLU threatening 5 other elected officials with the same practice in January. Last month, the Mississippi Department of Health stopped allowing comments on its official Facebook page to combat a “surge in misinformation” about “harmful and inaccurate comments.”

The ban on comments remains in place.

We asked the Mississippi ACLU for a comment on how the situation between a state senator prohibiting comment from a non-member is legally different from a state agency completely prohibiting comment on their social media presence. At the time of going to press, the ACLU had not responded.

We will update this story with comments from the ACLU as they become available.

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