Alexander Hall is a staff writer for MRC TechWatch
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On April 16 cartoonist Ben Garrison announced on Twitter that he had been banned by Instagram for supposedly “violating their terms.” But he said it more likely posting conservative speech Instagram didn’t like. The cartoonist gained renown for his comics supporting Trump during the 2016 campaign. He quipped that the real translation of his alert from Instagram was: “You're a threat to the Democrat narrative.” Shortly after he asked which type of conservatives and free thinkers they would come after next, eventually becoming “Anyone who disagrees with the #Democrat Narrative #censorship” as momentum builds for the “#2020Elections”
Antitrust is coming for Big Tech, at least according to one business expert. Prof. Scott Galloway, of the NYU Stern School of Business, said it will take some time, but there will a bipartisan breakup of Big Tech. “I believe DOJ or FTC action perhaps supported by attorney generals [sic] in states, maybe even red states, that file antitrust action” will happen.
Google gathers so much data on its users that police are relying on that information to help solve crimes. And that has privacy advocates very worried. Google’s phone location tracking system Sensorvault has been dubbed the “digital dragnet” for law enforcement and has been employed in states such as California, Florida, Minnesota and Washington. It’s a database of where users have been and hat has helped police track the location history of cell phones near where crimes have taken place. According to The New York Times it has tracked “hundreds of millions of devices worldwide and dating back nearly a decade.”
A tech company that investigates job applicant social media posts has found “red flags” in roughly 24.5 percent — marking them for sexism, racism, and hate speech. Companies are hiring California-based Fama Technologies, which scanned more than 20 million pieces of public content in 2018. According to CNN Business, Fama creates “risk profiles” for job applicants and/or current employees “by scouring publicly available content online, including social media, message boards, blogs, news articles and comment sections.”
Google has joined other tech companies in trying to explain its bias against the pro-life film, Unplanned. Unplanned is the story of Planned Parenthood clinic director Abby Johnson, experienced a profound change of heart after watching an ultrasound-guided abortion, eventually becoming a prominent pro-life activist.
At the Senate Judiciary hearing on April 10, Republican senators went beyond establishing the liberal biases of Silicon Valley social media giants, and questioned the very idea of “hate speech.” Senator Ted Cruz proclaimed not only that banning “emotionally” harmful content is absurd, but that “None of us have a right to live in a world free of being offended.”
At the Senate Judiciary hearing on April 10, Republican senators grilled Facebook and Twitter for denying their liberal biases. Senators Ted Cruz, Ben Sasse, and Mike Lee each took turns roasting the tech corporations on multiple issues. When they tried to deny that a corporate culture of liberal bias exists, Cruz brought down the hammer and used Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg’s own testimony against them.
Freedom of speech and expression were under a full scale assault at a House Judiciary Committee Hearing, but Rep. Tom McClintock (R-California) came prepared with a powerful speech. At the April 9 hearing on “Hate Crimes and the Rise of White Nationalism,” freedom of speech was mostly ignored. With Rep. Jerry Nadler (D-NY) at the helm, a vast majority of Democrat speakers, and a panel of witnesses obsessed with identity politics, this debate centered on Democratic preoccupation with racism.
How long does it take for a liberal tech company to drop a lefty hate group? The Daily Caller News Foundation reported that the scandal riddled SPLC is no longer a member of Twitter’s Trust and Safety Council. An anonymous source from Twitter informed the DCNF that “The SPLC is not a member of Twitter’s Trust and Safety Council or a partner the company has worked with recently.”
Google has scrapped an ethics advisory board on Artificial Intelligence after the outcry over the inclusion of a African-American conservative. The inclusion of conservative think tank Heritage Foundation leader Kay Cole James drove left-wing Google employees into hysterics, signing a 2,000+ petition titled “Googlers Against Transphobia and Hate.” They referred to Kay Coles James, a black grandmother, as “weaponization of the language of diversity.”
Black conservative Amy Holmes was called a “Nappy headed nigga!” on Twitter and when she reported it, she was told the racist attack did not violate the company’s standards. Twitter has taken extensive heat for its anti-conservative clear bias. Senator Josh Hawley (R-Mo.) made headlines yesterday when he demanded it face investigation by a third-party for bias against the right. The social media platform has suspended people for tweeting “learn to code” at laid-off liberal journalists(or even tweeting the phrase at all), while now allowing people to tweet the N-word at black conservatives.
The world’s most-popular YouTuber is now under attack from the left. Liberals want to silence him and remove from YouTube because they claim he’s a “white supremacist.” In a Change.org petition signed by 67,186 people, liberals are campaigning to remove YouTuber PewDiePie and blame him for a recent anti-Muslim terror attack. Maria Ruiz, who launched the petition, demanded that, “In the wake of the most recent mosque shooting I believe it is time to take action as a community and remove white supremacist content from our platforms.”
Freshman Senator Josh Hawley (R., Mo.) has penned a letter to Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey, calling on the Big Tech exec to allow an audit for anti-conservative bias. Hawley has made a name for himself in numerous recent cases as a conservative watchdog against the overreach of big tech, but the censorship of a pro-life movie’s Twitter account moved him to action. National Review obtained an exclusive copy on April 3 that showed Hawley scorching Twitter for its bias and demanding an investigation.
Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg’s call for regulation wasn’t well received by FCC Commissioner Brendan Carr.Zuckerberg urged governments get involved navigating the issues of “harmful content, election integrity, privacy and data portability.” Carr responded during a “Cavuto: Coast-to-Coast” interview Sunday. He called the idea “a way of passing the buck for a lot of the criticism that Facebook has been receiving recently and trying to shift the blame and the responsibility onto the government.”
Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg called for government regulation to meet the challenges of “harmful content, election integrity, privacy and data portability,” in a Washington Post op-ed on March 30. In the piece, Zuckerberg stated that he was advocating for more government regulation of online content.
Republican Senator Josh Hawley of Missouri and his allies are putting Big Tech companies on notice for collaborating with a foreign power. Hawley’s own website features video and transcript of his exchange with Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, General Joseph Dunford over the troubling collaboration between American tech companies and foreign countries. “Google, an American company based in this country, again supposedly an American company, is doing work in China that directly or indirectly benefits the Chinese government at a time of increased peer competition with this country,” he observed.
A software engineer at Google has made another devastating reveal of Google’s liberal bias. Mike Wacker leaked two pages of far-left dogma on race, privilege, and sexuality published in Google’s Allyship 101 “diversity training” materials. He quipped on Twitter, “At Google, we are a nonpartisan company…so long as you first accept our highly partisan definitions of key terms.” He elaborated that these policy-shaping definitions come from sources like “UC Berkeley and also Robin DiAngelo, the author of White Fragility.” Wacker previously made headlines when he claimed that a Google manager vowed “we need to stop hate [speech] and fake news because that’s how Trump won the election.
Google’s new gaming platform comes with a big hitch — more censorship. Google has announced the launch of Stadia, a new streaming service that will allow people to pay to play a wide selection of games online. The goal is to have it become the gaming equivalent of Netflix. Only Google wants Stadia to become a gaming safe space. As CNET observed “Google wants to prevent its new Stadia from filling up with racists, bigots and trolls who congregate online.”
Left wing agitators are capitalizing on tragedies to crack down on free speech. After blaming the Gab platform for the Pittsburgh shooting, lefty organizations are now blaming Reddit and message boards such as 4chan for the New Zealand terrorist attack. Online forums are now the targets because those are critical battlegrounds in the war of ideas. As noted by a Vice article fretting about the power of memes to destabilize society, “Meme wars seem to favor insurgencies because, by their nature, they weaken monopolies on narrative and empower challenges to centralized authority.”
Big Tech has tried to shut down conspiracy theories online, but after the release of the Mueller Report on Sunday, bias watchdogs and conservative leaders are asking when RussiaGate will be treated the same way. Conservative commentator Michelle Malkin tweeted: “Since Silicon Valley companies are cracking down on harmful conspiracy theory disseminators, when will they start shadow-banning, suspending & throttling 99.99% of MSM's thoroughly discredited Russia collusion crackpots. #TickTock.” Malkin addressed Big Tech bias in her fiery speech at CPAC.