First, we want to clarify that we don’t agree with much of what Alex Jones, founder, and owner of “Infowars” has to say. Secondly, we do agree with some of the things Alex Jones has to say. And lastly, it doesn’t matter if we agree with him or not, what matters is that because he’s living in the United States of America, Alex Jones has the right to his opinion. Whether we agree or disagree, or the heads of social media platforms like Facebook, or tech giants like Google or Apple agree, or disagree with his opinions, is irrelevant. As long as he’s not calling for violence or anarchy, they’re simply opinions. Americans should be given the opportunity to decide if they want to click on his content, or not. Whether liberal CEO’s of tech giants like it or not, social media and the internet is the place where people go to discuss a variety of opinions and to have political debates. Deleting or placing restrictions on a person or alternative news source, simply because their opinions may not be popular with a certain segment of our society, should be considered censorship, and Americans of every political persuasion should find these punitive anti-free speech actions alarming.
To his credit, Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey openly stated that he will not cave to pressure from the left to ban Alex Jones and his “Infowars” program from the Twitter.
Facebook, Apple, YouTube and Spotify took down over the past week material published by Jones, reflecting more aggressive enforcement of their hate speech policies after rising online backlash and raising pressure on Twitter to do the same.
Jones’ Facebook account has also been suspended for 30 days but he still has a “verified” Twitter account. A separate Twitter account for “Infowars” is also still running.
Dorsey said Twitter did not want to take “one-off actions to make us feel good in the short term, and adding fuel to new conspiracy theories.”
He said he wanted the company to avoid succumbing to outside pressure but instead impartially enforce straightforward principles “regardless of political viewpoints.” He also linked to a blog post Tuesday by the company’s vice president for trust and safety, Del Harvey, outlining the company’s policies. –AP
If you want to experience how the Chinese must feel when they attempt to access news on the internet, go to an Infowars article that includes a Youtube video, try to access one of their podcasts on Apple, or try to find them on Facebook or Twitter.
Videos created or published on Youtube by Infowars on their articles, now look like this:
If you click on one of their YouTube videos, it will take you to an Orwellian-like message informing the user that the YouTube account associated with the video has been terminated.
After Google-owned Youtube demonetized or took away their ability to earn advertising dollars on their platform from their videos, Apple fell into line and removed their podcasts from their platform. Twitter has admitted to shadow-banning (hiding their content from followers) Infowars, and last week, Facebook unpublished their Infowars page. So, who was behind the decision to shut down the Infowars page on Facebook?
According to the New York Times, the order to ban the radio host came from the very top.
The situation was volatile enough that Mr. Zuckerberg got personally engaged, according to two people involved in Facebook’s handling of the accounts. He discussed Infowars at length with other executives, and mused privately about whether Mr. Jones — who once called Mr. Zuckerberg a “genetic-engineered psychopath” in a video — was purposefully trying to get kicked off the platform to gain attention, they said.
Here is Alex Jones’ response to Mark Zuckerberg who allegedly claimed he was trying to have his page shut down on Facebook to receive attention. Jones calls this new world of censorship in America, that we’re living in, “Bizzaroworld”:
Mr. Zuckerberg, an engineer by training and temperament, has always preferred narrow process decisions to broad, subjective judgments. His evaluation of Infowars took the form of a series of technical policy questions. They included whether the mass-reporting of Infowars posts constituted coordinated “brigading,” a tactic common in online harassment campaigns. Executives also debated whether Mr. Jones should receive a “strike” for each post containing hate speech (which would lead to removing his pages as well as the individual posts) or a single, collective strike (which would remove the posts, but leave his pages up).
The article goes on to highlight that Zuckerberg took his decision to Apple, which was the first major tech platform to enact mass censorship against Infowars. Following the lead of Tim Cook’s company, who earlier this year publicly trash-talked both Facebook and Zuckerberg personally, would be a humiliation for Zuckerberg.
To be fair, Facebook has not removed every trace of Infowars from their platform. Infowars LIVE is an active community page, where Jones still has the ability to publish articles and videos.
As we were publishing this article, investigative journalist, Laura Loomer announced that her pages have also been unpublished by Facebook for reporting about two Muslim women running for political office. In her tweet, Loomer claims that Facebook and Twitter are trying influence the 2018 elections:
We, at 100 Percent FED UP, have been huge supporters of President Trump and his policies on both our 100percentfedup.com website and our Facebook page, that has almost 1.7 million followers. Our Facebook traffic dropped by almost 90% after President Trump’s inauguration and never recovered.
Only 10 days before the 2016 election, we woke up to find our page had been unpublished. After Breitbart News wrote an article about our page being shut down, Facebook apoligized and said it was an error.
Facebook responded “Hi all—This was a mistake. The page is back up.”