Almost immediately after President Trump’s inauguration, Facebook traffic on our 100 Percent Fed Up Facebook page began to plummet. Within one year, our traffic had dropped over 90% from the previous year. Meanwhile, on Twitter, the growth of our account has been mostly stagnant for much of the past 18 months. Were the sudden drops in traffic a coincidence or were they coordinated? We have no way of knowing, because both Twitter and Facebook keep their algorithyms hidden from public view, and in doing so, have been able to skirt much of the controversy surrounding the censorship of conservative news sites like ours. The Gateway Pundit, who had a massive influence on the 2016 election, also witnessed a drop of over 90% in traffic from 2017 to 2018. Recently, Jim Hoft, owner of the Gateway Pundit complained about his stagnant nubers on Twitter.
Yesterday, Donald Trump Jr. tweeted a link to an op-ed he wrote about the censorship of conservatives by tech giants, like Twitter, Facebook and Google.
Here’s an excerpt from Trump Jr.’s op-ed in The Hill –
From “shadowbans” on Facebook and Twitter, to demonetization of YouTube videos, to pulled ads for Republican candidates at the critical junctures of election campaigns, the list of violations against the online practices and speech of conservatives is long.
I certainly had my suspicions confirmed when Instagram, which is owned by Facebook, “accidentally” censored a post I made regarding the Jussie Smollett hoax, which consequently led to me hearing from hundreds of my followers about how they’ve been having problems seeing, liking or being able to interact with my posts. Many of them even claimed that they’ve had to repeatedly refollow me, as Instagram keeps unfollowing me on their accounts.
While nothing about Big Tech’s censorship of conservatives truly surprises me anymore, it’s still chilling to see the proof for yourself. If it can happen to me, the son of the president, with millions of followers on social media, just think about how bad it must be for conservatives with smaller followings and those who don’t have the soapbox or media reach to push back when they’re being targeted?
Thanks to a brave Facebook whistleblower who approached James O’Keefe’s Project Veritas, we now know that Mark Zuckerberg’s social media giant developed algorithms to “deboost” certain content, limiting its distribution and appearance in news feeds. As you probably guessed, this stealth censorship was specifically aimed at conservatives.
Now, after years of complaining about censorship on social media, one conservative Republican lawmaker is finally taking action against one of the tech giants accused of censoring conservative voices.
The lawsuit filed Monday alleges the social media giant censored conservative voices by “shadow banning” figures, which Nunes says potentially impacted the 2018 midterm election results. Others named in the lawsuit include GOP operative Liz Mair, Mair Strategies, “Devin Nunes’ Mom” (@DevinNunesMom) and “Devin Nunes’ cow” (@DevinCow), two parody accounts that mocked the Trump ally and California Republican.
Fox News reports – The lawsuit alleged defamation, conspiracy, and negligence, and sought not only damages, but also an injunction compelling Twitter to turn over the identities behind numerous accounts he said harassed and defamed him. The lawsuit is separate from Nunes’ work on the House Intelligence Committee, where he is now the ranking member.
“Twitter is a machine,” Nunes’ personal attorney, Steven S. Biss, told Fox News. “It is a modern-day Tammany Hall. Congressman Nunes intends to hold Twitter fully accountable for its abusive behavior and misconduct.”
Although federal law ordinarily exempts services like Twitter from defamation liability at all levels, Nunes’ suit said the platform has taken such an active role in curating and banning content — as opposed to merely hosting it — that it should face liability like any other organization that defames.
“Twitter created and developed the content at issue in this case by transforming false accusations of criminal conduct, imputed wrongdoing, dishonesty and lack of integrity into a publicly available commodity used by unscrupulous political operatives and their donor/clients as a weapon,” Nunes’ legal team wrote. “Twitter is ‘responsible’ for the development of offensive content on its platform because it in some way specifically encourages development of what is offensive about the content.”
Nunes accuses Twitter of “facilitating defamation on its platform” by “ignoring lawful complaints about offensive content and by allowing that content to remain accessible to the public” despite alleged violations of its terms of service and rules.
“Twitter, by its actions, intended to generate and proliferate the false and defamatory statements about Plaintiff in order to influence the outcome of the 2018 Congressional election and to intimidate Plaintiff and interfere with his important investigation of corruption by the Clinton campaign and alleged Russian involvement in the 2016 Presidential Election,” the lawsuit reads.
The suit alleges Mair “relentlessly smeared and defamed” the California Republican in citing allegedly false reports accusing him of being involved with a winery embattled with a scandal involving the solicitation of underage prostitutes and cocaine. Nunes has strongly denied the accusations in the report.
The lawsuit also accuses the social media platform of failing to remove “libelous” statements made about Nunes posted by Twitter handles @DevinNunesMom and @DevinCow.
“Defendant, Devin Nunes’ Mom, is a person who, with Twitter’s consent, hijacked Nunes’ name, falsely impersonated Nunes’ mother, and created and maintained an account on Twitter (@DevinNunesMom) for the sole purpose of attacking, defaming, disparaging and demeaning Nunes,” it states.