“But, it’s a private company.”
It’s a familiar argument. Bring up the problem of Google, Facebook and Twitter suppressing conservative speech and many conservatives will retort that it’s a free market. The big dot com monopolies created their own companies, didn’t they? And we wouldn’t want government regulation of business.
Having failed to impeach President Trump on grounds of collusion with the Russians, the Democratic left and its allies have turned to other weapons in their arsenal to obstruct his re-election. Their instruments can be very potent: a media blitzkrieg, the raising of the dead (the cemetery vote), multiple vote counting, newly franchised illegal voters, massive vote harvesting, and social media censorship—all of which constitute a campaign of monstrous voter fraud.
LONDON — In Spain, activists were convicted for social media posts that violated an expanded antiterrorism law. The Twitter accounts of German citizens were blocked because of rules enacted last year that prohibit hate speech. And a Dutch court determined Google must remove search results about a doctor punished for poor performance, in compliance with a privacy law.
Heralded as the world’s toughest watchdog of Silicon Valley technology giants, Europe has clamped down on violent content, hate speech and misinformation online through a thicket of new laws and regulations over the past five years. Now there are questions about whether the region is going too far, with the rules leading to accusations of censorship and potentially providing cover to some governments to stifle dissent.
Trump had better crackdown on them.
In the free-form, roller derby race for the Democratic presidential nomination, few candidates are better positioned than California’s Senator Kamala Harris. She is a fresh and attractive mid-fifties face, compared with septuagenarian frontrunners Joe Biden and Bernie Sanders, or the aging progressive Elizabeth Warren. Part Asian-Indian, part Afro-Caribbean, and female, Harris seems the frontrunner in the intersectionality sweepstakes that currently largely defines Democratic politics. Yet the national obsession with ethnicity and novelty obscures the more important reality: Harris is also the favored candidate of the tech and media oligarchy now almost uniformly aligned with the Democratic Party. She has been a hit in all the important places—the Hamptons, Hollywood, and Silicon Valley—that financed Hillary Clinton’s 2016 campaign.
Big tech has long since caved to the power of big journalism. The spread of the Russia collusion hoax, fully approved of by Microsoft partner NewsGuard, is only the latest example.
At the behest of left-wing activist writers from mainstream sources, YouTube deliberately suppressed pro-life videos in its search results. After months of hitpieces from the likes of CNN and BuzzFeed, Silicon Valley united to ban Alex Jones and InfoWars across every major social media platform.
Still capitalists at heart, tech titans cozied up to the progressive Left—until the contradictions became too obvious.
Amazon’s decision to abandon New York City—leaving a $3 billion goodie bag of incentives on the table—represents a break in the progressive alliance between an increasingly radicalized Left and the new technocratic elite.
For a decade, the oligarchs of Silicon Valley and Puget Sound worked overtime to win over progressives. For the most part, they enthusiastically back the Left on its immigration, environmental, gender, and racial agendas. The merger of the tech oligarchs with the Democrats went swimmingly—until the contradictions became too obvious. Even as they muzzled conservatives both inside and outside their companies and donated heavily to President Obama and other Democrats, they have remained at their core ruthless capitalists, determined to crush competition and shape society to their liking.
If you’ve been following the news you may not need reminding, but another study has come out showing that Canadian wireless providers make the most money off their customers, far ahead of thirty-odd countries studied.
Analytics firm tefficient earlier this month published a sweeping study of mobile data across 39 countries, both developing and industrialized.
Without consulting with its users, Microsoft has installed an establishment media browser extension, purportedly designed to rate the accuracy of news websites, as a default setting on mobile versions of its Edge browser. In practice, it creates a news blacklist by warning users away from sites including Breitbart News, The Drudge Report, and the Daily Mail.
Carl Benjamin, aka Sargon of Akkad, on what his ban from Patreon means for internet freedom.
Recently, YouTuber Carl Benjamin, aka Sargon of Akkad, was banned from Patreon, one of the internet’s most popular crowdfunding platforms for content-creators. Benjamin is well-known for his regular missives against PC culture and for his willingness to offend.
Patreon says Benjamin violated its community guidelines on hate speech. But the offending content was never hosted or funded by Patreon. In an interview for another YouTube channel, Benjamin referred to a group of alt-right trolls who had been harassing him as ‘niggers’ and ‘faggots’.
This morning Google told me that it would not allow my YouTube video “Socialism Leads to Violence” to be viewed by young people. It violates “community guidelines,” said the company in a computer-generated email.
Anti-capitalist bias? Or just an algorithm shielding children from disturbing violence in Venezuela? I don’t know.
But a new documentary, “The Creepy Line,” argues that companies like Google and Facebook lean left and have power they shouldn’t have.
President Donald Trump has an opportunity to follow in former President Teddy Roosevelt’s footsteps. Will Donald Trump follow TR’s lead?
I’ve just finished reading Columbia Law professor Tim Wu’s new book on antitrust, “The Curse of Bigness,” and my biggest takeaway is that President Donald Trump has an opportunity to follow in former President Teddy Roosevelt’s footsteps.
Roosevelt built a strong reputation by going after the trusts, huge combinations that placed control of entire industries in the hands of one or a few men. He broke up John D. Rockefeller’s Standard Oil, the Google of its day. He shut down J.P. Morgan’s Northern Securities Co., which would have monopolized rail transportation in much of the United States. And he pursued numerous other cases (45 in all) that broke up monopolies and returned competition to markets.
Trump and Russia may have dominated the political discourse all summer, but last week the attention turned again to America’s internet technology giants. They had enjoyed a few months out of the spotlight following grueling congressional hearings in Washington late last year, after evidence emerged of Russia’s use of social media fake accounts to try to influence voters in the 2016 US presidential election.
But that respite ended last week after a tweet from Donald Trump that electrified the news agenda from Silicon Valley to the capital when, seemingly out of the blue – he posted a bizarre tweet. “Google search results for ‘Trump News’ shows only the viewing/reporting of Fake News Media. In other words, they have it RIGGED, for me & others, so that almost all stories & news is BAD,” he tweeted. Trump went on to allege that Google was censoring right-wing voices and privileging voices from the left.
When an ordinary account gets banned on Facebook, it’s possible that no human was ever involved in the decision. Not so for Alex Jones and Infowars. According to the New York Times, the order to ban the radio host came from the very top.
Related… Alex Jones and the rise of corporate censorship
Fascist is a big word not to be bandied about (though it too often is these days), so let me make myself clear. I’ve spent about ten minutes of my life on InfoWars and think Alex Jones is a boring blowhard of little interest except to those who want to spend their lives worrying about whether there was a second gunman on the Grassy Knoll.
Nevertheless, the group censorship of Mr. Jones, led by our friends in Cupertino, the makers of the ubiquitous iPhone — I’ve had a half-dozen myself and am typing this on a MacBook — is one of the scarier developments of our time, if not potentially the scariest.
Facebook has banned four pages run by the American conspiracy theorist Alex Jones for “repeated violations of community standards”, the company said on Monday.
The removal of the pages – the Alex Jones Channel Page, the Alex Jones Page, the Infowars Page and the Infowars Nightly News Page – comes after Facebook imposed a 30-day ban on Jones personally “for his role in posting violating content to these pages”.
Following that suspension, a Facebook spokesperson said: “More content from the same pages has been reported to us – upon review, we have taken it down for glorifying violence, which violates our graphic violence policy, and using dehumanising language to describe people who are transgender, Muslims and immigrants, which violates our hate speech policies.”