It’s no secret that major social platforms have been harassing conservative users. For years, they’ve been blocking, shadow banning, or outright rejecting popular users who support conservative ideas and the president. But all that might change soon, because a Republican senator just unveiled his plan to fix it.
If you’ve been using Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, or any number of social media sites recently, you probably know about the massive attempt to censor conservatives. Popular conservative figures—from news people to commentators to entertainers—have faced severe backlash from these sites since Trump’s election.
It seems sites like Facebook believe they were responsible for Donald Trump’s victory—not you and me, the ones who voted for him. They think that if they crack down on the spread of conservative ideas on their websites, he’ll lose in 2020. So will all conservatives in future elections.
The fact remains that the people who run all your favorite websites (Google, Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, Reddit, etc.) are hardcore, left-wing Democrats. Silicon Valley is largely liberal and even discriminates against conservatives within their own industry.
For over three years, these websites have been banning popular conservative accounts over minor infractions. Often, liberal users will break their rules—even posting death threats and hate—and never face the same penalty.
A common tactic is to “shadow ban” a user. This is when the conservative still has access to his/her account, but nobody can see their posts. They’re banned without even knowing it.
Numerous Senate hearings have been conducted to get to the bottom of this. The president himself frequently chides social media for censoring conservatives. But it looks like someone is actually doing something about it.
On Wednesday, Senator Josh Hawley (R-MO) unveiled legislation aimed at stopping increasingly prevalent Big Tech censorship by stripping massive corporations of platform protections if said companies do not maintain political neutrality. The Ending Support for Internet Censorship Act specifically addresses how massive tech platforms are treated under Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act (CDA).
“With Section 230, tech companies get a sweetheart deal that no other industry enjoys: complete exemption from traditional publisher liability in exchange for providing a forum free of political censorship,” Hawley explained on Wednesday…
“There’s a growing list of evidence that shows big tech companies making editorial decisions to censor viewpoints they disagree with. Even worse, the entire process is shrouded in secrecy because these companies refuse to make their protocols public.” [Source: Daily Wire]
Every last American should be worried about social media censorship. In the United States, we enjoy free speech, protected by the First Amendment. But sites like Facebook are making sure you can’t say what you want without getting punished. They may be targeting conservatives now, but it will soon hurt everyone.
Hawley’s new bill will remove the immunity provided by the government. For a long time, they weren’t regulated like public utilities—because the government assumed social sites were providing open platforms for its users. That’s not true anymore.
This bill will require companies to reveal their editorial process to make sure they aren’t discriminating against users.
This bill will also remove automatic immunity from big tech companies. They will have to provide clear and convincing evidence that their algorithms and practices are politically neutral.
Stripping immunity from a big tech site means they will be held responsible for any and all content posted on their websites. This would make Google, Facebook, and all the others responsible for all content that’s posted on their platforms. I doubt very much they’d like that.
This bill intends to force these social networks to prove they aren’t discriminating conservatives by revealing how they police content on their sites. If past, it will strike a huge blow for free speech online and perhaps end a dark period where liberal websites were blocking our most sacred freedom.
But will it get support from the rest of Congress? Who knows? There is good reason to believe liberals will not want to support such a bill, because social media censorship benefits their side.
Perhaps if Americans backed this bill, they would have no choice but to pass it.