Today Facebook, and by default Instagram (since Facebook owns them) have banned the following from their platforms today:
- Alex Jones
- Laura Loomer
- Paul Joseph Watson
- Milo Yiannopoulos
- Louis Farrakhan
Instagram just banned Alex Jones, Infowars, Milo Yiannopoulos, Paul Joseph Watson, Laura Loomer, Paul Nehlen, and Louis Farrakhan https://t.co/kB1wp6Z3S0
— Taylor Lorenz (@TaylorLorenz) May 2, 2019
The mere fact that Facebook saw IG, a rising competitor, bought them out, and this somehow didn’t violate anti-trust laws, shows how useless anti-trust laws are. And this is why. In a free market if you get banned from one service you can just go and use another service. Except if the same people own all those services and work in concert together to ban you completely, which is exactly what has happened to many.
Jones was already banned from Facebook, but this time they’ve banned people from even sharing content from his website.
Jones is also banned from Twitter, Spotify, Apple, Pinterest, LinkedIn and Mailchimp, just in case he wanted to send out a newsletter.
Loomer has already been banned from Twitter, as well as having her accounts cancelled with Chase Bank, PayPal, and GoFundMe.
Milo was banned from Twitter over two years ago for having the audacity to make fun of Leslie Jones.
Watson and Farrakhan have not been banned from any other platforms. Yet.
I have so many thoughts on this I’ll get to, and I take it very personally because I’ve been getting banned by these tech companies since before anyone gave a shit about censorship. Turtleboy INVENTED tech censorship. I warned the world about it, but no one cared because it could never happen to them. Well now it is.
Let me start by saying that none of these people should be banned from anything. Alex Jones is a conspiracy theorist who said some terrible things about Sandy Hook being a hoax. He was wrong, and he admits today that he was wrong. But he’s wildly entertaining. I never listened to him until recently, but his entire rambling presentation is one of the craziest things I’ve ever heard, yet I could not look away. Listen to the 5 hour podcast he did with Joe Rogan and you’ll thank me later. Why are they trying to hide this from us like children?
Laura Loomer is also insane.
Right-wing activist Laura Loomer, last seen chaining herself to Twitter HQ, has jumped the fence at Nancy Pelosi's Napa home and set up a tent protesting immigration. Now she's chanting "Nancy, Nancy!" pic.twitter.com/Te4W2Ut6Pa
— Will Sommer (@willsommer) January 14, 2019
Laura Loomer has chained herself to Twitter and is protesting “Twitter is Anti-Semitic!”https://t.co/ovfSu2BMsp
— Jack Posobiec 🇺🇸 (@JackPosobiec) November 29, 2018
This one is epic.
But she’s also very entertaining. She, like Jones, is a conservative.
Milo is a conservative provocateur. He’s a gay British dude, who likely is overdoing his whole shtick because he’s a showman, but when you actually listen to his points of view you can tell he’s smart and his thoughts are nuanced. You don’t have to agree with him, and you can hate him, but that doesn’t mean he should be banned.
Paul Joseph Watson is my favorite follow on Twitter. As you know, I’m banned from that platform, but I still go on it and read the tweets of 10-12 people I find interesting, and he’s usually the first. Although he works for Infowars his takes on tech censorship are some of the best I’ve read on the Internet. He has nearly a million followers on Twitter, but I’d expect that he’ll be banned from there any day now. For the record, he’s never, ever tweeted or posted something on Facebook that has gone against their terms of service. His opinions are just “dangerous.”
Farrakhan is an anti-semite who Facebook threw on their banned list so they could have plausible deniability when they inevitably get accused of only banning conservatives, since he’s a demigod of the radical and sometimes mainstream left. But guess what? I don’t care that he’s an anti-semite. I’m not threatened by another person’s opinions, because I have my own and I can choose to ignore or engage people I disagree with.
The reasoning is even worse – these people are “dangerous.” Ideas are dangerous. Who said that anyway?
Oh right, Joseph Stalin. Nice guy. Definitely someone the arbiters of free speech on the Internet should be emulating.
There’s nothing dangerous about any of these people, especially Watson. Laura Loomer is a joke. No one takes her seriously. Alex Jones is an entertainer, and people who take him seriously are harmless. But mostly they’re not dangerous because words in and of themselves are not dangerous. And when we start banning speech because it could hypothetically incite violence, we are no longer free because we’re blaming the speech instead of the violence itself.
The precedent that’s being set here is what’s dangerous. Some things that Watson, Jones, Loomer, and Milo have in common – opposition to illegal immigration, support for gun rights, resistance to letting boys become girls and beat girls in sports, support for Trump. They’re saying that having conservative opinions is in and of itself dangerous. And they’re setting up the groundwork for 2020 by slowly eliminating some of Trump’s strongest supporters from social media. Trump is the first social media President. He won largely because he mastered it before anyone else.
So it’s time to start calling this exactly what it is – election meddling. Social media is where political discourse takes place. Every single candidate for office in 2020 will have a social media team because social media is not something you can afford to ignore anymore, because most people use it on a daily basis. Kicking people with millions of followers off your platform prevents them from sharing ideas and beliefs with millions of people and that effects how people vote. These people were diehard Trump supporters and were instrumental in his victory in 2016. Congress is blaming the Russians for election meddling when the real culprits are in Silicon Valley.
PJW did a great video on it today, and actually retweeted a Turtleboy link in it:
None of these people should be banned from Twitter because Twitter is a civil right. And yes, that’s exactly what access to platforms is – a civil right. Civil rights are not the same thing as constitutional rights. They are rights that the government can create through legislation. In the 1950’s privately owned restaurants had the right to deny you service if you were black. Up until recently privately owned businesses could ban you if you were gay. Then we realized that we had the power to create laws that made these rights and this was universally accepted as a good thing. Platform rights are the same thing. Everyone should have access to online platforms regardless of the things they say. Everyone.
The scary part about this is how the left and the media cheers this on. They LOVE it!! This is the typical person on social media who the tech companies cater to:
Guess Facebook is finally gonna enforce their new policies on white nationalist content. https://t.co/XomE3pz9zQ
— Melissa Ryan (@MelissaRyan) May 2, 2019
It's an exhausting fight, getting the tech platforms to do the right thing and protect the safety and civil rights of the vast majority of their users. But the work has value and as we're seeing now, a real impact. That's what sustains me on bad days. Moments like this one.
— Melissa Ryan (@MelissaRyan) May 2, 2019
A disgusting blog of deep fried social justice. It’s been an “exhausting” fight to get people removed from social media who she doesn’t agree with. Perhaps she should’ve done something else exhausting, like exercise. Then she wouldn’t be so miserable and project her insecurities on others. And please, spare me the “fat shaming is below you Turtleboy.” I don’t shame fat people. I shame terrible people and exploit their biggest weaknesses. This woman is pure evil. She’s a fascist using a lie that these people are white nationalists in order to silence people who disagree with her so that her candidate can win in 2020. We should declaring war against these people, and I could give a shit less if she cries herself to sleep every night because she’s fat and disgusting. Eat shit.
But as bad as liberals are, “conservatives” who think this is OK are even worse. Every single one of these frauds has one thing in common – they’ve never been censored. If they were then they’d know what it feels like to have a voice and then have that voice snatched away from you.
“But muh private company.”
Private companies don’t have the right to ban people for no reason, which is what they’ve done today. Private companies don’t have the right to create monopolies on free speech, which is what they’ve done over time.
Can Staples ban me from buying paper? I might write something hateful or “dangerous” on it.
Can Verizon ban me from using their cell phones? I might spread conspiracy theories about Sandy Hook to someone.
Can Spectrum ban me from using their Internet? If I’m banned from Facebook I might find a new place on the Internet to share my opinions.
Where does this end exactly? Conservatism has never been about allowing radical leftists to control what we say and manipulate our elections. If you think that’s what it is then you’re a simple minded dildo. Like these two knobs:
Reminder for my conservative friends tonight:
Private companies have every right to deny you access to their platform. Because it's their platform. You don't have a constitutional right to a Facebook or Twitter account.
— Cabot Phillips (@cabot_phillips) May 3, 2019
“It’s their platform.” – Guy who has never been kicked off their platform and naively believes they will never come for him.
Serious question to "conservatives" who want the gov't to regulate social media: what do you do when the GOP loses control of the White House & Congress? That day will come, even if only temporarily. When it does, do you want President AOC appointing the regulators?
— Tiana Lowe (@TianaTheFirst) May 2, 2019
Here’s your answer Tiana. If the government regulates social media and AOC becomes President and kicks me off, then I can sue because it’s officially the government banning speech and that’s a First Amendment violation. I’d take this any day of the week over what we currently have. As it currently stands they can get away with this because it’s not the government banning speech. That ends once it’s nationalized. My phone company has more regulations than Facebook, a fraction of the users, and multiple competitors. That’s what the role of the government in commerce is – to make sure megacorporations aren’t monopolizing and using their power to deny services to citizens.
Make no doubt about it conservatives – they’re coming for you next.
@benshapiro should be included as well. He spews Islamophobic hatred – particularly against @IlhanMN – on a daily basis and was the chief inspiration behind the Quebec City mosque shooter. He is as much a merchant of hatred and a peddler of misinformation as any of those banned.
— Peter Tromp (@peterjtromp) May 3, 2019
This is a youtuber with 20M subscribers praising Prison Paul from Infowars for his great work. Radicalization on Youtube is very real, the platform is a cesspool of far-right reactionaries pic.twitter.com/1PoRJFaCC4
— Nathan Bernard (@nathanTbernard) January 31, 2019
These people will not stop until all of you are banned. And you idiots are stupid to think you’ll be spared.
Of course Trump will do nothing because he’s never been censored either, and he’s too old to understand how any of this works. He could fix this with a quick executive order, or by just leaving these platforms because they’d beg him to come back. He makes them more money than anyone, and gets Twitter’s brand name on the nightly news every single day. Instead he’ll just whine about how it’s “totally unfair” and go back to talking about the wall.
Here’s my question – What’s more dangerous – handing free speech rights over to the government, or handing them over to radical leftist billion dollar corporations in Silicon Valley? I’d rather pay a $100 fine to AOC than be silenced completely. But yea, thank God the evil government isn’t getting involved. That would be bad.
This is an age thing too. Younger conservatives, and older conservatives who are active on social media, are the ones who get it. They understand how vital this space is for democracy. So on that I’ll leave you with some good tweets from smart people who understand how dangerous these Orwellian practices really are.
It’s a mainstream position now to want terrorists to be able to vote, but not for people who make you uncomfortable to be able to type words on social media. I can’t wrap my head around any of this.
— Cassandra Fairbanks (@CassandraRules) May 2, 2019
The fight against social media censorship needs to be a priority for EVERY conservative right now.
Most people get their news online, meaning these companies control what the electorate does/does not see.
How can conservatives win elections when we can’t even share our ideas? https://t.co/MfwkIubrV0
— Lauren Chen (@TheLaurenChen) May 3, 2019
Trump will cry about it on Twitter from his bath robe if Fox & Friends does a segment on it. https://t.co/QgzrCvpmn7
— Mike Cernovich (@Cernovich) May 3, 2019
How the fuck are their liberals going "but muh private platform" but also telling private businesses they MUST serve certain people.
Why should online platforms be exempt from civil rights law?
— Tim Pool (@Timcast) May 2, 2019
This is crazy. They just banned someone who has never broken any of their rules or violated their terms of service in any way. This is political censorship, straight up. https://t.co/E7S0Wx9C01
— Matt Walsh (@MattWalshBlog) May 2, 2019
Ask anyone claiming, “Private companies can ban whoever they want,” if those companies can ban African Americans.
Conservative intellectuals are the biggest joke out there. These aren’t smart, nuanced thinkers.
— Mike Cernovich (@Cernovich) May 3, 2019
There is simply no justification for Facebook's censorship of @PrisonPlanet. Silent conservatives, they're coming for you next.
— Michael Knowles (@michaeljknowles) May 3, 2019
"Now is not the time for boomer conservatives to rant about “muh private companies” either.
The digital square and the public square in person have become inseparable."
— Jack Posobiec 🇺🇸 (@JackPosobiec) May 2, 2019
Facebook has gone great lengths to coddle the right and show there is not some anti-right-wing conspiracy at the company. I can think of no better way of undermining this than banning all the high-profile far-right people on your platform at once with a coordinated media release
— Jason Koebler (@jason_koebler) May 2, 2019
Libs: "Corporations are the worst and can't be trusted."
Also Libs: "Corporations should have all the power to ban anyone on their platforms that they disagree with."
— Caleb Hull (@CalebJHull) May 2, 2019
That case involved forcing someone to create a custom product/work of art that didn't exist. In this case, we just want tech companies to allow conservatives to use the products/services they've put on the market (supposedly) for everyone to use. https://t.co/hJP98EFrY8
— Mark Dice (@MarkDice) May 3, 2019
This is the key point. Facebook will ban you for sharing Infowars links now, unless you're condemning them.
It is openly punishing and rewarding users for their political opinions now.
This is a formula for censoring not just websites and personalities, but their supporters too https://t.co/pNjGlbYAt9
— Allum Bokhari (@LibertarianBlue) May 2, 2019
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