Censorship

Alabama is in hot water, but not for the reason you may think.

Alabama Public Television has decided not to air a new episode of the kids’ show “Arthur,” in which Arthur’s teacher marries another man (or aardvark, technically; the teacher himself is a rat, which really goes to show that none of this makes any sense at all).

Mike Mckenzie, director of programming at APT, told AL.com that the network was concerned about children watching the episode without supervision.

“Parents have trusted Alabama Public Television for more than 50 years to provide children’s programs that entertain, educate and inspire,” Mckenzie said. “More importantly — although we strongly encourage parents to watch television with their children and talk about what they have learned afterwards — parents trust that their children can watch APT without their supervision. We also know that children who are younger than the ‘target’ audience for Arthur also watch the program.”

The creators of “Arthur,” on the other hand, want to familiarize children with same-sex marriage, reflecting the changing landscape of America. And there was nothing lewd or inappropriate about the cartoon gay wedding.

China was widely condemned for pulling a similar move after “Bohemian Rhapsody” came out last fall. The Freddie Mercury biopic was stripped of its “gay scenes,” including one in which Mercury tells his fiancée he’s not straight.

No one benefits from this sort of censorship. In the case of “Bohemian Rhapsody,” the film loses some of its cohesion. It’s a story about Mercury’s personal life, after all. In the case of the “Arthur” episode, children are being sheltered from an increasingly common occurrence in America that’s going to have to be explained to them at some point. Parents can explain it to their children however they’d like, but hiding a TV wedding doesn’t change the fact that same-sex marriage is becoming more popular.

Kids are exposed to plenty of controversial social issues on a daily basis. And if parents don’t want their kids to watch “Mr. Ratburn and the Special Someone,” they can turn off the TV.

In the past two years, a phenomenon called “Techlash” has changed societal attitudes about platforms such as Facebook, Google, and Twitter that have largely enjoyed favorable images until recently. As perception has shifted, the public outcry for social media regulation has increasingly grown.

Surprisingly, conservatives have been among the loudest in that chorus.

Many Republicans claim conservative content is being targeted and silenced by big tech companies. Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, has championed this line of attack, recently holding a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing called “Stifling Free Speech: Technological Censorship and the Public Discourse.” Under his legally incorrect interpretation, Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act requires platforms to be “neutral” to enjoy the protection from liability.

Maybe Cruz skipped or slept through that class when he was at Harvard Law, but there is no requirement for content on a platform to be neutral to trigger the First Amendment protections. If conservatives believe that a private actor should be neutral to be protected by the First Amendment, they are definitely on the wrong side of the Masterpiece Cakeshop case.

That Supreme Court case dealt with the question of whether a baker can decline to bake a cake for a gay wedding because of the baker’s personal religious beliefs. In practice, the implication of Cruz’s idea, that platforms must be neutral to enjoy First Amendment protection, would make websites tailored for specific populations cease to exist. Projects such as creating a version of Facebook for conservatives (this proposal was backed by Donald Trump, Jr.) would be illegal. Since Cruz wants every platform to be neutral, an American won’t be able to have a website to discuss issues that matter to them (abortion, gun control) without people who oppose their views participating.

Requiring “neutrality” by platforms is, in effect, a rejiggered version of the long-dead “Fairness Doctrine,” but for the internet. That policy required broadcasters to present controversial issues in a balanced way, giving equal time to both sides. Generations of conservatives opposed this policy and, after it passed a Democrat-controlled Congress, President Ronald Reagan vetoed it.

To ensure that the internet exists as a space in which speech can thrive, Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act was written to protect platforms from liability for the content of third parties. Today, it serves as the cornerstone of free speech online.

Contemporary attempts by the government to force platforms into creating a “neutral public forum” present a threat to the internet as it is known today for three reasons:

First, in response to the vague standards associated with content neutrality likely to follow from the Cruz approach, platforms will be incentivized to over-censor to avoid liability. In the process, conservatives crying of censorship now will be shocked by the restraints of such a brave new world.

Second, smaller businesses will not have the resources to comply and respond to the avalanche of litigation associated with such a requirement. Ironically, for politicians worried about “bias” from widely used platforms; making them liable would only strengthen their dominance. Lawyer squads and resources available to the Facebooks and Googles of the world will handle any litigation going their way, but smaller websites that facilitate discussion and are trying to break into the industry won’t stand a chance.

Third, countries that are in the process of building democratic institutions, or those that have autocratic regimes, will be emboldened to suppress opposing views online, following the U.S. lead under the auspices of “neutrality.” This phenomenon will be particularly problematic in nations where democratic institutions aren’t strong enough to resist the allure of authoritarianism.

Arguing about the employee make-up of tech companies who wield tremendous power is fair game. Demanding more transparency, so the public knows how content moderation decisions are made, won’t harm free speech.

In contrast, trying to play referee on the internet would entirely harm free speech.

Ashkhen Kazaryan (@Ashkhen) is director of civil liberties at TechFreedom.

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On May 26, 2018, actor Brandon Straka released a video that started a viral movement.  Straka had been a faithful member of the Democrat party, until he decided to walk away from what he saw as a party that was moving toward hate.  To date, his #Walkaway movement has inspired tens of thousands of former liberals to do the same.

The official #WalkAway Campaign Facebook page has 203k followers

In his original video, Straka asks others to walk away from
the Democrat party for the reasons he did, the incessant identity politics, division,
hate, intolerance and growing calls for violence.  Since then, flocks of former Democrats have
been making their own #walkaway videos, writing letters and joining local
#walkaway groups, a sign that many Americans are waking up to the illusion that
the Left is on their side.

This weekend, at The Trump Hotel in Washington, DC, the #Walkaway campaign is celebrating the one year anniversary of it’s founding.  The three day celebration began with a screening of the “documonial”, entitled “The Great Awakening – Breaking The Chains of The Democratic Party.”  Part documentary and part testimonial, the 35 minute video, the creation of Hollywood filmmaker and director Mike Boss, is a compilation of #walkaway testimonials of black Americans from all over the country.

Screenshot from the #WalkAway “Documonial”

The evening began with the arrival of special guests and #walkaway movement members mingling in the lobby, purchasing black T-shirts with the iconic #walkaway logo in plain white or rainbow, and telling their #walkaway stories.  People from all over America were in attendance, from as far away as Tucson, Arizona, Boulder, Colorado and Charleston, South Carolina.  Some life-long Democrats who’ve walked away, others who purport to #walkwith (those who support someone who has walked away), and others who’ve been long time Republicans and want to show support to those leaving the Democrat party.

Guests mingled and purchased T-shirts before the screening

The program commenced with a brief introduction by Straka, the movement’s founder.  He welcomed the guests, discussed the evolution of the #walkaway movement and how the documentary came to be.  Serving-sized bags of pop corn were made available to the audience and the documentary began.  The documonial walks you through different chapters in the history and the experience of black America.  Many, if not all, the stories documented how black American’s predominantly vote Democrat, and how those who’ve now walked away, began their journey by doing their own research into the history of the Democrat party. 

Straka ‘s #WalkAway phone case and President’s Congratulatory Tweet

Issues like the founding of Planned Parenthood by eugenist Margaret Sanger and the historically Democrat founding of the Ku Klux Klan were common themes.  “The parties never switched. That’s a lie,” said one testimony.  “We’ve been kept on the plantation for our votes.  Well, I’m off the plantation now”, exclaimed another.  The videos show people realizing that they’ve been manipulated, lied to and fooled into thinking the Democrats cared about them.  The most profound realization for most was that the Democrats talk about helping minorities, show how worried they are about what will happen if conservatives are elected to power, and then proceed to do nothing of benefit to help those they claim to defend.  The documonial received a standing ovation from the crowd.

The evening continued with #walkaway Match Game, where two audience members filled in the blanks to conservative questions and won points if a VIP panelist gave the same answer as the contestants. The questions, written by Straka, gave everyone the opportunity to laugh and make fun of various political current events. 

The night concluded with a VIP panel fielding questions from the audience. Panelists included investigative journalist Tracy Beanz, Scott Presler of The Persistence, conservative meme creator Carpe Donktum, Blaze.tv correspondent Jon Miller, author Shemeka Michelle and singer Joy Villa, among others. Fifteen year old Andre, from Boulder County, Colorado, wearing a Trump 2020 hat, asked “What are the defining characteristics of being American?” Pressler responded, “Pride. We have freedom of opportunity. We are the most privileged, greatest free-est country in the world.”  A question on social media censorship sparked Jon Miller to respond, “They’re coming for you next. If you’re a conservative and you’re speaking out, you’re next.  Twitter is a platform that the President uses to communicate with his country, and if the people can’t hear their President, it’s a violation of their civil rights.”

The anniversary event continues Saturday May 18th
with Roaring 20’s theme party at the Trump Hotel, On Sunday the 19th
a rally is schedule to take place in front of the White House. The rally is
open to the public and starts at noon.

Source: The Washington Pundit

COMMENTARY

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In multiple settings, we are seeing a trend toward narrowing the scope of opinions allowed in the public arena. Heading into high school and college commencement season, a rising tide of ideological censorship is drowning out diversity of opinion. And academia leads the way in defining acceptable thought. 

This means that as the number of “disinvitations” for conservative speakers piles up, the idea that speech equates to violence is gaining purchase. Silencing different viewpoints is not only growing on campuses, it’s also spreading to the tech world and the corporate arena. 

This week Google censored the Claremont Institute, a highly regarded conservative think tank with a 40-year track record of defending American founding principles such as freedom of speech and religion. Claremont recently launched a campaign to raise awareness of illiberal speech codes and their threat to freedom; at the same time, the institute started online advertising for its upcoming anniversary dinner. 

Apparently not recognizing the absurdity of censoring an organization for writing about censorship, Google shut down the ads and told Claremont there would be “no appeal.” Claremont’s offense? The discussion of multiculturalism and speech codes on its website. 

Eventually, Google relented. But only after Claremont went public did Google back down and acknowledge a “mistake.” 

But this “mistake” isn’t an isolated incident. This censorship episode comes right on the heels of a similar one aimed at the president of the Heritage Foundation, Kay Coles James. In April, Google formed – and then within a week disbanded — an advisory committee related to its work on artificial intelligence. It said the panel was intended to bring “diverse perspectives” to bear on issues in this rapidly evolving area of innovation and invited James to serve on it. 

Mrs. James is by any measure a proven leader, having served at the highest levels of government, academia and the nonprofit sector. She also established the Gloucester Institute to train and mentor young black leaders, and has a career marked by explicitly defending the human dignity of every individual. 

But James is also conservative. And so a band of five Google employees began circulating a petition calling for her ouster. 

Ironically, the petition cited the need for the AI panel to address “historical patterns of discrimination and exclusion.” If anyone knows discrimination and exclusion, it’s James, who suffered verbal and physical abuse as she helped desegregate a middle school in the South as a teen. 

Doubling down on the irony, the petition lamented that AI “doesn’t ‘hear’ more feminine voices, and doesn’t ‘see’ women of color.” Still, because Mrs. James holds some policy views that differ from theirs, she was deemed not to have a “valid perspective worthy of inclusion.” 

The Googlers refused to see her, or hear her, in her own voice. That’s discrimination and exclusion in action. The takeaway message is clear: Diversity means agreeing with us. Disagreeing with us is intolerance and even “violence.” 

As a civil society, we are careening toward ideological balkanization. This trend of labeling opinions with which we disagree as dangerous and hateful threatens Americans’ foundational freedoms. Charges of dangerous speech are laid as an exercise in bullying and raw power. 

This tide of bigotry and intimidation is not limited to America. The noted English philosopher and public intellectual Sir Roger Scruton was recently fired from a government housing commission after being accused of anti-Semitic and Islamophobic comments. The charges were leveled after a lengthy interview with The New Statesman

For three weeks, while Scruton was being pilloried, the paper refused to release the tape of the interview. But Douglas Murray of National Review Institute obtained a copy of the tape and forced the paper to release a transcript. Not surprisingly, Scruton’s actual words did not match the reported description. But he has not been reinstated. 

Make no mistake, once the totalitarian impulse is tolerated, and cloaked in sanctimony, its targets will be far-ranging. And, well, diverse. 

For example, a group of students at the University of the Arts in Philadelphia launched a protest against the noted feminist scholar and tenured professor Camille Paglia. Like Google, they began a petition demanding that Paglia be fired and replaced by a “queer person of color.” Notably, Paglia is a lesbian who has described herself as transgender. Yet the protesters charged her with making “dangerous” comments about people who identify as transgendered. 

The only actual comment cited in the petition—“I question whether the transgender choice is genuine in every single case”— is a heavily caveated statement, and yet the campus censors still labeled her views unacceptable. 

With this cultural creep toward oppression, we are losing something that has been essential to the core of the American identity. To his credit, the president of the University of the Arts, David Yager, responded to the Paglia controversy by stating: “I firmly believe that limiting the range of voices in society erodes our democracy.” 

This is a critical point: If valuing diversity and pluralism is to have any meaning, we cannot label opinions with which we disagree as “discrimination” as a way of silencing someone with a different viewpoint. 

Affirming a robust interpretation of the First Amendment and freedom of speech will sometimes require uncomfortable conversations. But living with — even valuing — this kind of discomfort is part of the American DNA and is at the heart of respect and civility. 

We can do better. We may be advancing rapidly in artificial intelligence, but we are regressing toward artificial freedoms.

Charmaine Yoest is vice president of the Institute of Family, Community and Opportunity at The Heritage Foundation (heritage.org).

Source: Real Clear Politics

If President Trump can’t stay off Twitter, he can’t seem to resist accusing it of liberal bias either.

Now, his White House has taken to the chief executive’s favorite social media platform to collect stories about partisan posts removed from Twitter itself or Silicon Valley rivals such as Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube.

“The Trump administration is fighting for free speech online,” the White House says in a tweet referring users to a form on its website that collects information including citizenship status. “No matter your political views, if you suspect your political views have caused you to be censored or silenced online, we want to hear about it.”

The survey marks the latest salvo from Trump and his Republican allies against tech companies concentrated in Democratic-leaning regions that they say are suppressing conservative opinions. Their concerns are rooted partly in the efforts of social media platforms to remove inflammatory content planted by foreign governments during the last presidential election, when intelligence agencies said Russia was attempting to sway voters in Trump’s favor.

Since then, the president has vented his frustrations in an Oval Office meeting with Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey and Republican lawmakers have grilled social media executives, who deny any partisan favoritism. In 2018, internet personalities Diamond and Silk, whose real names are Lynette Hardaway and Rochelle Richardson, told the House Judiciary Committee that Facebook had downplayed their posts because of they supported Trump.

[Opinion: Trump’s Twitter threats have lost their shine]

Facebook’s ban this month of users including Alex Jones of Infowars and Louis Farrakhan of the Nation of Islam this month further inflamed claims of social media censorship. The expulsions, which included far-right political commentator Milo Yiannopoulos and four other incendiary posters, was one of the broadest steps the Menlo Park, Calif.-based company has taken to punish online provocateurs.

Facebook attributed the decision to its long-standing policies on acceptable posts, while the president responded in a tweet that he was continuing to monitor censorship closely.

“This is the United States of America — and we have what’s known as FREEDOM OF SPEECH,” Trump said.

The president, who ranks 13th among the world’s most widely followed Twitter users with more than 60 million followers, has claimed his numbers would be even higher if the San Francisco-based company wasn’t “shadow-banning” the supporters who catapulted him into the White House three years ago. Former President Barack Obama, several notches higher at No. 2, has 106 million.

“Very discriminatory,” the president has said on Twitter, noting that followers regularly disappear in large swaths. “No wonder Congress wants to get involved.”

Many celebrities and politicians, however, might love to have Trump’s numbers.

Former Vice President Joe Biden, a front-runner among Democrats vying to unseat Trump in 2020, has only 3.5 million followers. Trump’s 2016 rival, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, has 24.5 million; and Jeff Bezos, the founder of e-commerce site Amazon and a frequent Trump foil, has just 927,000.

[Also read: Trump accuses Twitter of ‘political games’ over his follower count]

Big Tech VS Free Speech ?
The end of Section 230 may be the key!

Please Donate to https://fundly.com/stopthebias

Together we can bring attention to the social media censorship and hold these monopolies to the exemption they have hid behind.

It’s no longer a question of whether the Giant Social Media Companies – Google, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, etc. – have become too powerful. They’ve matured to the point that they can actually affect what people see, read, listen to and even what See More they think. To make matters worse, they’ve decided that they will use these powers to change voting patterns and to Censor speech that opposes their political beliefs.

It’s time to stop them before all is lost. Harmeet Dhillon (Attorney Suing Google and Republican Party Official) has been on Tucker Carlson’s show frequently of late and she warns,

“Trump won’t win in 2020 and we will never win another election if we don’t stop this!”

One of the most likely ways for Congress to stop them would be to revise Section 230 of the Communications and Decency Act (CDA) that provides a special exemption from liability for content that is posted on their platforms. This exemption was initially extended to them because they claimed that their platforms would be a place for people from all points of view to post their ideas. Given their current Censorship actions, we all know that is no longer the case.

Consequently, the Social Media Platforms should be subjected to the possibility that they be responsible for all content that is posted on their sites since they selectively publish just as the New York Times or Washington Post do. In fairness, then, the Social Media Platforms should bear the same risk of liability for their content as other publishers.

This move would, of course, destroy their business model so they would be likely to change the Censorship tactics they use against Conservatives in order to avoid any changes to Section 230 of the CDA.

Alternatively, the threat of Antitrust Litigation is another avenue that may get their attention. The government should apply the same techniques against these Social Media Giants as they used to bring Microsoft to heel.

Our goal is to see our leaders pursue these remedies before it’s too late!

Reprint from:
https://www.fastcompany.com/90273352/maybe-its-time-to-take-away-the-outdated-loophole-that-big-tech-exploits

The 1996 law that made the web is in the crosshairs

Internet companies have long been shielded from legal responsibility for toxic user content by the Section 230 statute. Now that they’re huge, rich, and behaving badly, that gift could be taken away.

In the face of that toxic content’s intractability and the futility of the tech giants’ attempts to deal with it, it’s become a mainstream belief in Washington, D.C.–and a growing realization in Silicon Valley–that it’s no longer a question of whether to, but how to, regulate companies like Google, Twitter, and Facebook to hold them accountable for the content on their platforms. One of the most likely ways for Congress to do that would be to revise Section 230.

UNDERSTANDING SECTION 230

Section 230 remains a misunderstood part of the law. As Wyden explained it to me, the statute provides both a “shield” and a “sword” to internet companies. The “shield” protects tech companies from liability for harmful content posted on their platforms by users. To wit:

(c) (1) No provider or user of an interactive computer service shall be treated as the publisher or speaker of any information provided by another information content provider.

Specifically, it relieves web platform operators of liability when their users post content that violates state law by defaming another person or group, or painting someone or something in a false light, or publicly disclosing private facts. Section 230 does not protect tech companies from federal criminal liability or from intellectual property claims.

“Because content is posted on their platforms so rapidly there’s just no way they can possibly police everything,” Senator Wyden told me.

The “sword” refers to the 230’s “good samaritan” clause, which gives tech companies legal cover for choices they make when moderating user content. Before § 230, tech companies were hesitant to moderate content for fear of being branded “publishers” and thus made liable for toxic user content on their sites. Per the clause:

(c) (2) (a) No provider or user of an interactive computer service shall be held liable on account of any action voluntarily taken in good faith to restrict access to or availability of material that the provider or user considers to be obscene, lewd, lascivious, filthy, excessively violent, harassing, or otherwise objectionable, whether or not such material is constitutionally protected

“I wanted to make sure that internet companies could moderate their websites without getting clobbered by lawsuits,” Wyden said on the House floor back in March. “I think everybody can agree that’s a better scenario than the alternative, which means websites hiding their heads in the sand out of fear of being weighed down with liability.”

Many lawmakers, including Wyden, feel the tech giants have been slow to detect and remove harmful user content, that they’ve used the legal cover provided by § 230 to avoid taking active responsibility for user content on their platforms.

And by 2016 the harmful content wasn’t just hurting individuals or businesses, but whole societies. Social sites like YouTube became unwitting recruiting platforms for violent terrorist groups. Russian hackers weaponized Facebook to spread disinformation, which caused division and rancor among voters, and eroded confidence in the outcome of the 2016 U.S. presidential election.

As Wyden pointed out on the floor of the Senate in March, the tech giants have even profited from the toxic content.

“Section 230 means they [tech companies] are not required to fact-check or scrub every video, post, or tweet,” Wyden said. “But there have been far too many alarming examples of algorithms driving vile, hateful, or conspiratorial content to the top of the sites millions of people click onto every day –companies seeming to aid in the spread of this content as a direct function of their business models.”

And the harm may get a lot worse. Future bad actors may use machine learning, natural language, and computer vision technology to create convincing video or audio footage depicting a person doing or saying something provocative that they didn’t really do or say. Such “Deepfake” content, skillfully created and deployed with the right subject matter at the right time, could cause serious harm to individuals, or even calamitous damage to whole nations. Imagine a deep-faked president taking to Twitter to declare war on North Korea.

It’s a growing belief in Washington in 2018 that tech companies might become more focused on keeping such harmful user content off of their platforms if the legal protections provided in § 230 were taken away.

SHIELDING GIANTS

There’s a real question over whether Wyden’s “shield” still fits. Section 230 says web companies won’t be treated as publishers, but they look a lot more like publishers in 2018 than they did in 1996.

In 1996 websites and services often looked like digital versions of real-world things. Craigslist was essentially a digital version of the classifieds. Prodigy offered an internet on-ramp and some bulletin boards. GeoCities let “homesteaders” build pages that were organized (by content type) in “neighborhoods” or “cities.”

Over time the dominant business models changed. Many internet businesses and publishers came to rely on interactive advertising for income, a business model that relied on browser tracking and the collection of users’ personal data to target ads.

To increase engagement, internet companies began “personalizing” their sites so that each user would have a different and unique experience, tailor-made to their interests. Websites became highly curated experiences served up by algorithms. And the algorithms were fed by the personal data and browsing histories of users.

Facebook came along in 2004 and soon took user data collection to the next level. The company provided a free social network, but harvested users’ personal data to target ads to them on Facebook and elsewhere on the web. And the data was very good. Not only could Facebook capture all kinds of data about a user’s tastes, but it could capture the user’s friends’ tastes too. This was catnip to advertisers because the social data proved to be a powerful indicator of what sorts of ads the user might click on.

Facebook also leveraged its copious user data, including that on the user’s clicks, likes, and shares, to inform the complex algorithms that curate the content in users’ news feeds. It began showing users the posts, news, and other content that the user–based on their personal tastes–was most likely to respond to. This put more attention-grabbing stuff in front of its users’ eyeballs, which pumped up engagement and created more opportunities to show ads.

This sounds a lot like the work of a publisher. “Our goal is to build the perfect personalized newspaper for every person in the world,” Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg said in 2014.

But Facebook has always been quick to insist that it’s not a publisher, just a neutral technology platform. There’s a very good reason for that: Publishers are liable for the content

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Savanah Hernandez hosts the War Room to discuss the recent 3D censorship that many conservatives are now facing. Adrienna Dicioccio and Brad Chadford join the show to discuss the next Free Speech rally in Washington DC. Harrison Smith gives us a preview of the newest InfoWars nightly broadcast and Peter D’ Abrosca and Paloma for Trump give us the latest on immigration news both in Mexico and the US.

GUESTS:
Dylon Suggs//Skype
Adrienna Dioccioco//Skype
Brad Chadford//Skype
Harrison Smith//In See More Studio
Peter D’ Abrosca//Skype
Paloma For Trump//Skype

Source: The War Room

Today’s War Room features guests Will Johnson in studio, Geoengineering Watch’s Dane Wiggington and Pro-life activist Dylon Suggs. Owen Shroyer also covers the latest censorship news and goepolitical news.

GUEST // (OTP/Skype) // TOPICS:
Dylon Suggs//Skype
Will Johnson//Skype
Dane Wigington//Skype

Source: The War Room

STERLING, Virginia (AP) — President Donald Trump criticized social media companies after Facebook banned a number of extremist figures, declaring that he was “monitoring and watching, closely!!”

Trump, who tweeted and re-tweeted complaints Friday and Saturday, said he would “monitor the censorship of AMERICAN CITIZENS on social media platforms. ” He has previously asserted that social media companies exhibit bias against conservatives, something the companies have rejected as untrue.

The president’s comments came after Facebook this week banned Louis Farrakhan, Alex Jones and other extremists, saying they violated its ban on “dangerous individuals.” The company also removed right-wing personalities Paul Nehlen, Milo Yiannopoulos, Paul Joseph Watson and Laura Loomer, along with Jones’ site, Infowars, which often posts conspiracy theories. The latest bans apply both to Facebook’s main service and to Instagram and extend to fan pages and other related accounts.

Facebook’s move signaled renewed effort by the social media giant to remove people and groups promoting objectionable material such as hate, racism and anti-Semitism. The company said it has “always banned” people or groups that proclaim a violent or hateful mission or are engaged in acts of hate or violence, regardless of political ideology.

On Twitter, Trump cited a number of individuals he said were being unfairly treated by social media companies, including Watson and actor James Woods. He insisted it was “getting worse and worse for Conservatives on social media!”

Woods, one of Hollywood’s most outspoken conservatives, has had his Twitter account locked. Twitter spokeswoman Katie Rosborough said Woods will need to delete a tweet that violated Twitter rules before he can be reinstated.

“We enforce the Twitter Rules impartially for all users, regardless of their background or political affiliation,” Rosborough said.

Trump, who uses Twitter extensively to push his message, recently met with Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey at the White House after attacking the company and complaining that it was not treating him well because he was a Republican. He later described it as a “great meeting.”

The president had more than social media on his mind Saturday. Trump also tweeted that he was holding out hopes for a deal with North Korea on its nuclear program, as well as improved relations with Russia, now that he feels the special counsel investigation is behind him.

President Donald Trump retweeted about a dozen messages Saturday morning, including two by a well-known right-wing personality, as he continued to assail what he says is bad treatment of “conservative thinkers” on social media such as Facebook.

The president also called for the “Radical Left Wing Media” to apologize for what he called “Russian Collusion Delusion.”

Facebook on Thursday said it was banning a number of contentious far-right personalities, including Infowars founder Alex Jones, Milo Yiannopoulos, a former editor of Breitbart News, and far-right activist Laura Loomer, for violating the social-media company’s policies on hate speech and promoting violence.

“We’ve always banned individuals or organizations that promote or engage in violence and hate, regardless of ideology,” a Facebook spokeswoman said in a statement.

Paul Joseph Watson, a British radio host and YouTube personality who goes by the Twitter handle @PrisonPlanet, was among those banned on Facebook and Instagram. He tweeted on Thursday that Trump should take action against Facebook.

On Saturday, Trump retweeted a message from the 36-year-old urging his followers to “keep up the pressure,” and a second wondering why his opinions should be deemed “dangerous.”

Trump in March accused Facebook, Alphabet Inc.’s Google and Twitter of favoring content from Democrats and blocking material from some Republicans. Facebook’s action this week also extended to Louis Farrakhan, the black nationalist minister who’s been accused of anti-Semitism.

On Twitter late Friday, the president posted that he was “so surprised” to see people like Watson and actor James Woods banned from Facebook, and said that others, including social media personalities “Diamond and Silk” had been treated “horribly.”

“I am continuing to monitor the censorship of AMERICAN CITIZENS on social media platforms. This is the United States of America – and we have what’s known as FREEDOM OF SPEECH! We are monitoring and watching, closely!!” Trump tweeted on Friday.

Facebook shares closed Friday at $195.47, up 1.5 percent, and are at the highest level since July 25.

Source: NewsMax Politics


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