Twitter and Facebook aren’t the only tech companies accused of downplaying or demoting conservative media.
Pastor James MacDonald posted a prayer on Facebook for President Donald Trump just before the new SCOTUS nominee was announced. His podcast, Walk in the Word, vanished from the Top 25 chart completely in a matter of 24 hours. According to CBN News, “In the past the podcast had never dipped below the Top 40, within 24 hours it wasn’t even making the Top 200.” Both CBN News and MacDonald wondered if Apple was“shadowbanning” the podcast.
MacDonald told CBN News that he wasn’t “Donald Trump’s biggest fan,” but that he found the administration “worthy of our gratitude and prayerful support.” And while Harvest Church isn’t outright accusing Apple of downranking their podcast, Dan Sumpter, global creative director, says its suspicious.
“Over the course of analyzing this strange change, someone brought to our attention that the change correlated almost exactly with a Facebook post made by Pastor James calling for Christians to pray for the President as he selected his nominee to replace Justice Kennedy.”
Sumpter said the numbers hadn’t changed for the podcast. “We saw no material change in our data on the back end. And, in fact, some of our most important numbers have been higher. Nothing has declined.”
He continued, “It seems more likely that there’s something going on here that only Apple can answer.”
Tony Perkins, President of the Family Research Council, believes that this is a case of social media attempting to stop the conservative movement online. He told CBN News that he “wasn’t surprised” at the pastor’s claim of shadowbanning and that “people are tired of this left-wing initiative effort to silence conservatives.”
Apple, the platform for iTunes, has fallen afoul of the conservative movement before. From encouraging users to donate to SPLC to selling anti-Trump video games, the company seems bent on distributing a liberal agenda. While they refuse to respond to MacDonald’s request for an explanation, their silence speaks volumes.