Corinne Weaver is a staff writer for MRC TechWatch
Corinne Weaver works as a senior analyst for the Media Research Center. As the Joe and Betty Anderlik Fellow, her coverage on tech censorship, media bias, and pro-life issues have been cited by many in the conservative movement. Corinne’s work has been featured in Fox News, the Guardian, LifeSiteNews, and the Federalist. Before her current position, Corinne graduated from Christendom College with bachelor’s degrees in English and History.
Latest from Corinne Weaver
So much for that “healthy conversation.” Twitter’s rules on abusive behavior and hate speech apparently exclude any form of anti-Semitism. Arsen Ostrovsky, executive director of the Israeli-Jewish Congress, reported a tweet directed at him which should have fallen under abusive behavior. But Twitter determined otherwise. In an email, Twitter Support informed Ostrovsky that the tweet, which called for the “stoning of the Jews,” “is not in violation of the Twitter Rules against abusive behavior.”
In the wake of the terrible terror attack in New Zealand that left several dead, tech companies are looking at censoring more content as a response. Microsoft President Brad Smith wrote a blog post on March 24 that called for a stronger approach to how tech companies deal with content they disagreed with on their platforms.
One of Google and YouTube’s trusted partners is not exactly trustworthy when it comes to reporting the facts. Google and YouTube elevated Wikipedia to the level of fact by using the volunteer-run encyclopedia site to fill in the blanks on “Knowledge Panels.”
Between censorship of conservatives and leaking private data to the world, social media companies are not really winning the trust and loyalty of their users. Now Facebook shot itself in the foot by mishandling millions of passwords.
“We’ve looked at the top social media companies. Twitter always ends up being the worst of the bunch,” MRC Vice President of Business and Culture Dan Gainor said on Trish Regan Primetime on Fox Business on March 19.
Social media companies cannot simply censor content without expecting consequences. So it should come as no surprise that Rep. Devin Nunes (R-CA) is suing Twitter for $250 million in damages. In a complaint filed on March 18, Nunes stated that Twitter “shadowbanned conservatives,” ignored lawful claims of abuse, and censored content based on political ideology. Nunes told Fox News host Sean Hannity that same night that, “This was the first of many lawsuits.” He believed that the abuse he received on Twitter was “an orchestrated effort.”
It should come as no surprise that a “voting company” that partnered with social media companies in 2018 failed to help voters register as advertised. Facebook and Twitter touted TurboVote as a voting reminder and an aid in registering to vote.
Twitter claims to be against “hate speech” and for “healthy conversation.” But the amount of anti-Semitic material allowed on its platform tells a different story. The aftermath of a confrontation between Chelsea Clinton and two Palestinian activists uncovered some disturbing anti-Israel and anti-Semitic tweets. Quillette editor Andy Ngo tweeted out screenshots of saved tweets from one of the activists,New York University student Leen Dweik, who approached Clinton. Her tweets said, “demolishing Israel IS a solution,” and “lmao sis just wait until we dismantle the entire state of Israel.”
The case against social media platforms and their consistent censorship of conservative content is growing rapidly. In a new op-ed by Donald Trump Jr., the president’s son slammed Facebook, Instagram, and Google for their latest mistakes in removing and downranking posts made by the right.
Former Vice President Joe Biden is taking his sweet time in deciding if he’s going to run for President in 2020. But a look at his plans might determine the answer anyway. CNBC interviewed an anonymous source from Twitter who said Obama’s Vice President was receiving advice from an unnamed Twitter executive.
In a troubling new video released by James O’Keefe’s Project Veritas, a former Facebook employee detailed the alleged suppression of conservative content on the social media platform. Facebook has denied the allegations. The anonymous insider, who was fired by Facebook in 2018, said she had seen “things that were going on that I personally found to be troubling.”
Financial processors who ban websites and businesses based on political ideology practice another, more insidious form of social media censorship. If blog or account depends on donations or sales of merchandise, it is vulnerable to being starved of revenue. Unfortunately, the processors aren’t necessarily reliably informed when they make such decisions.
Silicon Valley has already sunk its claws into the 2020 election. Senator Cory Booker (D-NJ) is running for president, along with many other Democrats. But he may have an advantage that the others don’t in connections with Silicon Valley.
Twitter has claimed in the past that it does not discriminate against conservatives. That’s just not true. In the past five years, there have been at least 113 different cases of conservative, pro-Trump or anti-establishment figures on Twitter being punished for expressing their views, many of them well-known in their fields.
Some of the motivating forces behind the 2020 elections could prove to be sinister for the First Amendment and media outlets the left hates. The founder of Data for Progress, a far-left think tank that endorses socialism and the Green New Deal, wants the next Democrat president to silence Fox News. He shared a study done by two Columbia University researchers that claimed judges who watched Fox delivered harsher criminal sentences based on racial motivation.
Facebook is willing to take down pages funded by Russia. Now it’s facing the question about what to do about other state-funded media outlets like Al Jazeera, BBC and even NPR? Facebook suspended three pages on February 15 , including the popular video site Ruptly. All three allegedly failed to disclose that they were backed by RT, which is funded by the Russian government.
Google is engaged in partisan warfare. And it picked the liberal side, choosing to work with two of the most prominent liberal outlets in the U.S. — The New York Times and Washington Post. The company detailed its efforts to fight “misinformation” at the Munich Security Conference on February 16. Google boasted that users trust the information they find on Google Search, and that information “comes from the reporting of journalists,” One of the solutions to fight “misinformation” was the Google News Initiative, which supports “quality journalism.”
Foreign governments are preparing to crack down on social media monopolies. An English House of Commons committee, the Digital, Culture, Media and Sport Committee, released a report claiming Facebook’s flaws were “risking the U.K.’s democracy.”
Successful businesses boost the economy of the state. But should they be forced to share their profits with the state? California Governor Gavin Newsom seems to think so. In his “State of the State” speech, given February 13, Newsom noted that California tech companies make billions in profits every year.
Twitter wants to regulate the kind of speech that’s allowed on its platform. But there will be some backlash from those who are banned.