For most of last year leading up to the 2018 midterms, conservative online publishers and pundits complained that the major social media tech platforms were banning them, censoring their content, and/or downgrading their materials and viewpoints in an effort to prevent even their followers from seeing it.
And for nearly as long, the head of Facebook, Twitter, YouTube/Google and others denied that any such censorship was taking place, or that there was a concerted, coordinated effort to keep conservative voices off their platforms.
In recent days, conservative media — ironically — have reported that yes, the tech platforms do indeed censor content they have determined to be “controversial” but which also happen to suppress Right-leaning viewpoints on issues like abortion.
Now we learn from a tech CEO himself that such censorship efforts are, in fact, well-coordinated between platforms.
As reported by Breitbart News, Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey told the Left-wing HuffPost in no uncertain terms that the social media behemoths “definitely collaborate” on various “methods” of censorship of certain content and, presumably, certain publishers.
During the interview, which was conducted by former Gawker correspondent Ashley Feinberg — who initially complained about Dorsey unfollowing her on Twitter — the CEO denied intentional censorship of conservatives and their content.
“I think it would be easy to believe a perspective if you only look at particular things. And you look at actions based on who you follow and whatnot,” he said after Feinberg asked him why conservatives believe they are being censored.
“I mean, people follow people that violate our terms of service and who we take action upon, and if you’re only following those people and you’re not following anyone else, you tend to see that and the perspective is strengthened,” the Twitter CEO declared.
“As I said in front of Congress, we do make some mistakes where our algorithms can be super aggressive. But do we build bias into our systems? No, it’s not in our policies, it’s not in our enforcement, and it’s not in our algorithms… So the main thing that we’re focused on is how we stay transparent with our actions and continue to be impartial — not neutral, but impartial.”
‘We definitely collaborate’
Dorsey said he “reached out to a bunch of people” including conservative pundit Ali Alexander before he banned Infowars creator Alex Jones, noting that Alexander advised against it.
He then denied that the social media giants work in tandem to suspend or otherwise downgrade conservative voices — then added that they “definitely collaborate” on “methods” with the other platforms.
“I think the conspiracy theory was that all companies were working in concert together to deplatform… in terms of all platforms working together. We definitely collaborate on methods, but particular actions, we don’t,” he admitted, without really explaining the difference.
“What I said is that there was an active conspiracy theory around all these companies working together. We want to state that we have a Terms of Service and that we are going to follow it. Then when we find that we need to take action, we’ll take action. But there’s no decision other than making sure that we stay true to our enforcement policies,” he added.
Conservatives argue that studies, examples, and anecdotal evidence suggest otherwise — that the platforms not only collaborate but target them.
In fact, the banning and censorship is so blatant that Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-Fla.) announced over the summer he was bringing a formal complaint to the Federal Election Commission (FEC) because, he said, Twitter editors were censoring or downgrading his feed, which amounts to a curb on his ability to reach his constituents.
Based on an investigation by far-Left Vice, Twitter was most definitely shadow banning several GOP lawmakers: Reps. Gaetz, Devin Nunes, Mark Meadows, Jim Jordan, and John Ratcliffe by blocking their names in the search bar.
Far from conjecture, the similarities between how Adolph Hitler ran Nazi Germany and how Jack Dorsey runs Twitter are striking. Both individuals are guilty of silencing those with whom they disagree, and both are guilty of operating their regimes with zero transparency – both Hitler and Dorsey acting as de facto dictators in purging “undesirables” from the conversation.
Consider the fact that Dorsey and his Silicon Valley “brown shirts” have been actively de-platforming, shadow banning, and in many other ways unfairly targeting conservatives, Christians, and other voices, simply for expressing views and opinions that contradict what Dorsey and his digital soldiers personally believe – which is exactly what Hitler did by publicly tagging Jews with sleeve stars, before later exterminating them.
While Twitter has yet to reach the point where it’s loading “offensive” users into actual ovens, the social media giant is, in many ways, forcing its opposition into digital gas chambers for no other reason than expressing viewpoints that Twitter finds unacceptable.
Twitter users who align with Dorsey’s views are given little blue checkmarks next to their names, allowing them unlimited free speech without restriction. But those who don’t align with Dorsey’s views are denied this “VIP” status, and are subject to a host of oppressive and arbitrary “community guidelines” that are selectively enforced against just them – which, again, echoes the discriminatory actions of Hitler in dividing Germany along racial and political lines.
“Twitter is increasingly obliging the left when it comes to censorship,” writes Rachel Alexander for Town Hall. “The company’s list of ‘offensive’ speech is growing,” she adds. “Now, calling a transgender person by their pre-transition names or referring to them with the ‘wrong’ pronouns can get someone banned.”
Unless Twitter is punished for trampling the First Amendment, it’s only going to grow increasingly more authoritarian
To those who would try to contend that Twitter is a private company, and is thus immune from being held accountable for its rampant censorship and discrimination tactics, it’s important to remember that Twitter and many other social media companies are blatantly violating the law by acting as both public utilities and publishers.
Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act (CDA) clearly states that tech companies must operate as either content providers or content publishers – and not both. And since Twitter, Facebook, and the rest are, in fact, continuously acting as both, they’re long overdue to be broken up by the federal government for functioning as monopolistic tyrants against free speech.
“There isn’t much of a ‘town public square’ anymore where anyone can go spout their views to a large crowd outside,” adds Alexander about how social media platforms like Twitter have become the new digital public spaces where people exchange their views – and should be allowed to do so freely.