By Isabelle Z.
A Texas lawmaker has introduced a bill that would see social media firms stripped of their “special legal protections” if they act in a biased way.
Representative Louie Gohmert said that social media companies such as Google, Twitter and Facebook are among the biggest in the world and wield an enormous amount of influence; in fact, he believes they are more powerful than traditional media outlets.
He takes issue with the fact that these firms can take advantage of legal protection provided by Section 230 in the Communications Act of 1934, which is something that does not apply to other types of media. He says this gives them free reign to act in a biased way. Despite congressional testimony to the contrary made by social media firm representatives, he says these companies are discriminating against conservative voices, in some cases using algorithms to prevent their opinions from being heard or harming their income streams.
He’d like to see social media firms held liable for biased employee conduct the way that other media companies are. Gohmert, a former district judge, is currently the Vice Chair for the Judiciary Subcommittee on Crime, Terrorism and Homeland Security.,
Top social media firms are blatantly biased against conservatives
Social media companies have a horrendous track record when it comes to biased behavior. Just ahead of the mid-term elections this year, Google, Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube carried out a coordinated purge of accounts belonging to alternative media and conservative outlets in an effort to silence them at a very strategic time. Hundreds of site administrators suddenly found their accounts removed, and many of the sites and their writers also had their Twitter accounts suspended. Some of the unpublished pages included the Free Thought Project, the AntiMedia, Gun Laws Don’t Work, Right Wing News, and Police the Police.
Regardless of whether you use social media or are a fan of any of these sites, the ramifications are tremendous; some 2.2 billion active users are being prevented from seeing certain alternative viewpoints.
Last year, we saw Facebook crack down on what it deemed “fake news,” which was really news that Facebook didn’t agree with as it didn’t further their own political agenda. The firm said that stories that users flag as fake or those that Facebook’s algorithm suspect are fake will be sent to two fact checkers, who will make a final determination. Facebook claims that both fact checkers must agree that a story deserves the label, but their fact checkers are known to lean heavily to the left.
YouTube isn’t much better. It started banning channels that promote alternative healing, such as with plants, that could have a negative impact on Big Pharma profits. Natural News was one of several YouTube channels to be shut down at the time, although it has since been reinstated. A 43-second video about the scientific properties of CBD was all it took to earn their animosity.
The platform has also started using fact-checking technology that it says will help steer its viewers toward “real” news – in other words, the type of news it wants people to read.
Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg has mentioned his optimism that “artificial intelligence tools” could soon be able to flag so-called hate speech immediately, and it’s clear that the censorship we’ve seen on social media platforms in recent years is only the beginning.
See SpeechPolice.news for more coverage of this important issue.