Cable news networks CNN and MSNBC declined to air Donald Trump’s press conference announcing a class action lawsuit against Silicon Valley’s tech giants while Fox News cut away before the former president began reliving his list of grievances over the election, the Capitol riot and Hunter Biden’s laptop.
Right-wing cable station Newsmax TV continued covering the press conference in full.
The broadcaster double-downed on its coverage of the event, promoting an upcoming interview with Mr Trump to discuss the lawsuit later on Wednesday.
Mr Trump announced the class-action lawsuit against the three major tech giants and their respective CEOs Mark Zuckerberg, Jack Dorsey, and Sundar Pichai over what he called “blatant violations of the constitution”.
Facebook, Twitter and Google kicked Mr Trump off their platforms in the wake of the Capitol riot by a mob of his supporters on 6 January.
The former president announced he would be the lead plaintiff representing a group of broader people he argues have had their First Amendment rights violated.
The major networks began cutting away from Mr Trump, or completely ignoring him, following his election loss to Joe Biden on 3 November last year. ABC, CBS and NBC all cut short the president’s White House address to the nation as he claimed the presidential election was being stolen.
MSNBC cut away during the 5 November address while CNN aired it in full before anchor Anderson Cooper called Mr Trump an “obese turtle on his back, flailing in the hot sun realising his time was over”.
Since that moment, networks have continued to scale back on their unfettered live airing of Mr Trump’s speeches and announcements, with even Fox News becoming more judicious in covering his remarks after leaving office.
Silicon Valley, meanwhile, completely memory-holed the ex-president’s accounts following the 6 January Capitol riots, leading to today’s class-action lawsuit.
After an hour-long criticism of Silicon Valley that was mostly ignored by the major broadcasters, Mr Trump ended his press conference bemoaning the mainstream media and network news not covering “what’s going on”, pointing to the violence and people being killed on a weekly basis in “Democrat-run cities”.
“Why you’re not talking about it, you’re not helping Biden, you’re not helping the Democrats, you’re hurting the country,” Mr Trump said of the media.
“If the people don’t hear this you’ll never be able to solve the problem… The loss of human life on a weekly basis and you turn on these major newscasts and a lot of people are watching and it’s not even mentioned, you have to change, you’ve got to get your credibility back, you don’t have the credibility, you have to get it back.”
Join our new commenting forum
Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies