Tuesday, August 07, 2018

Midterm Meddling By Facebook And The "Socials"

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Facebook and the other social media platforms appear to be teaming up to silence conservative and Christian voices on social media.

It's not an "incident"---it's a "trend."

It isn't a "slippery slope," it's a "cliff."

And we're headed for it.

Facebook is meddling with the mid-term elections. So are their social media brothers and sisters.

Facebook blocks Republican Congressional Candidate ad.

Facebook has restricted Republican congressional candidate Elizabeth Heng's campaign from placing a video ad, deeming it too "shocking, disrespectful or sensational" because it features her American immigrant parents, who survived brutalities by the Khmer Rouge communists during the Cambodian Civil War.

Heng was notified Friday by Facebook: "We don't allow ads that contain shocking, disrespectful or sensational content, including violence or threats of violence."

The Cambodian Civil War, which ended in 1975, killed an estimated 275,000 to 310,000 people and displaced 2 million people from rural areas. Her parents were among them.

It was awful. I was in that part of the world during those years in evangelical Christian mission ministry.

Her video that Facebook rejected does contain actual historical images of violence during the Civil War. These were included to make the point that she believes in America and that socialist communism is a disaster.

Facebook says "no," that's not acceptable.

This is not a new position for Facebook, it's merely the most recent occurrence.

Heng said, "It is unbelievable that Facebook could have such a blatant disregard for history that so many people, including my own parents, have lived through. I'm sure it is shocking for some people to hear about this kind of injustice, but this is reality."

Heng is the conservative Christian counterpart to the Democrat Party's rising star Alexandria Ocasio Cortez except--Cortez's experience includes working as a waitress and embracing Bernie Sanders and his message of socialism, while Heng's experience includes being student body president of Stanford University, receiving an MBA from Yale, and creating a very successful business in California with her brothers.

Senator Ted Cruz Grilled Facebook's Zuckerberg--Told not to worry.

Last April, Senator Ted Cruz grilled Facebook CEO and Founder Mark Zuckerberg about some of these concerns.

Senator Cruz began, "Mr. Zuckerberg, I will say there are a great army of Americans who I think are deeply concerned that Facebook and other tech companies are engaged in a pervasive pattern of bias and political censorship."

Cruz noted a number of instances where Facebook bias has clearly influenced what the public was permitted to see and what they were not permitted to see.

Zuckerberg didn't disagree, and said the tech industry in Silicon Valley "is an extremely left-leaning place."

Cruz asked, "Are you aware of any ad or page that has been taken down from Planned Parenthood?"

Zuckerberg answered, "Senator, I'm not."

At the end of the questioning of Zuckerberg by Cruz, Zuckerberg said: "We're proud of the discourse and the different ideas people can share on the service...and as long as I'm running the company, I'm committed to making sure is the case."

Why do we care that much what Facebook does?

Facebook represents the largest single audience in the world. Therefore, they are the primary influencer in news and current events.

Look at this. As of July 29, 2018:

  • Worldwide, there are over 2.23 billion monthly active Facebook users.
  • There are 1.15 billion mobile daily active users.
  • 1.47 billion people on average log onto Facebook daily.
  • There are 1.74 billion mobile active users.
  • On average, the "Like" and "Share" Buttons are viewed across almost 10 million websites daily.
  • 29% of users are age 25 to 34
  • Facebook users are 76% female and 66% male.
  • There are 83 million fake profiles.
  • 42% of marketers report that Facebook is critical or important to their business.

While Facebook has recently taken the largest equity loss in business history, they remain a major factor and influencer in the culture.

At 2.23 billion users, Facebook has more monthly active users than WhatsApp (1.5 billion). Twitter (336 million) and Instagram (1 billion).

Media companies' bias and manipulation of news not just a slippery slope, but a cliff.

Brent Bozell, president of the conservative Media Research Center, said yesterday in response to Facebook, Apple and Spotify removing "The Alex Jones Show" and other InfoWars content from the Internet:

“I don’t support Alex Jones and what InfoWars produces. He’s not a conservative. However, banning him and his outlet is wrong. It’s not just a slippery slope, it’s a dangerous cliff that these social media companies are jumping off to satisfy CNN and other liberal outlets.
“This is part of a disturbing trend. In recent months top conservative congressmen have been shadowbanned on Twitter. Pro-life and pro-gun posts and videos are often removed on several platforms. Liberal journalists even objected to one conservative outlet attending a meeting with Facebook. Several conservative organizations like Live Action, the NRA and even the Christian satire site Babylon Bee have complained they had posts removed or censored.
“Social media sites are supposedly neutral platforms, but they are increasingly becoming opportunities for the left and major media to censor any content that they don’t like. The lack of transparency is also problematic and, as of this release, Facebook, Apple and Spotify have provided no detailed explanation for the ban.
“Conservatives are increasingly concerned that InfoWars is not the end point for those who want to ban speech. It’s just the beginning. We are rapidly approaching a point where censorship of opposing voices is the norm. That’s dangerous.”

Indeed it is dangerous.

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