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Trump’s new tool for collecting online bias stories asks for citizenship status



The White House’s new online tool for people to report perceived bias or censorship on social media platforms asks users to submit screenshots, links and any other details that could show they were penalized for their political views.

It also wants to know if you’re an American citizen.

The online form, launched on Wednesday and officially called the Tech Bias Story Sharing Tool, asks about nationality in the third question, right after users enter their first and last names.

“Are you a US citizen or permanent resident?” the form asks.

Screenshot/Business Insider

On the landing page for the tool — which is no more than a simple Typeform — it says that “too many Americans have seen their accounts suspended, banned, or fraudulently reported for unclear ‘violations’ of user policies. No matter your views, if you suspect political bias caused such an action to be taken against you, share your story with President Trump.”

The problem is that the form doesn’t say exactly how the information will be used, which in the case of non-US citizens or permanent residents could be potentially dangerous. The Trump administration has pushed for stricter immigration laws, and has called for deporting immigrants who are in the country illegally without the usual legal process.

Currently, President Trump is trying to add a similar citizenship question to the 2020 census, but that decision is still being decided by the Supreme Court, which heard arguments for the case in late April. Opponents of adding a citizenship question to the census say that doing so could discourage participation and ultimately impact the allocation of Congressional seats.

Read more: The White House created an online tool for Facebook and Twitter users to report examples of political bias and censorship

Adding the citizenship question to the new social media bias tool could be a straightforward way for the White House to narrow down the submissions it needs to review. In fact, when selecting that you are not a US citizen, the form does not allow you to move forward and provide a response. It does, however, collect a person’s first name and last name.

The White House did not immediately respond to Business Insider’s request for comment.

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