“Today, we’re removing 559 Pages and 251 accounts that have consistently broken our rules against spam and coordinated inauthentic behavior.
Given the activity we’ve seen — and its timing ahead of the US midterm elections — we wanted to give some details about the types of behavior that led to this action.
Many were using fake accounts or multiple accounts with the same names and posted massive amounts of content across a network of Groups and Pages to drive traffic to their websites…
Of course, there are legitimate reasons that accounts and Pages coordinate with each other — it’s the bedrock of fundraising campaigns and grassroots organizations. But the difference is that these groups are upfront about who they are, and what they’re up to.”
“It’s difficult to have meaningful conversations about any of this because we’re a political monoculture, and these are political issues,” Brian Amerige, a Facebook engineer, said in an internal memo that went viral.
He accuses Facebook of a stifling culture that is intolerant of conservative views, where left leaning ideology can not be criticized:
“We are a political monoculture that’s intolerant of different views… we claim to welcome all perspectives, but are quick to attack — often in mobs — anyone who presents a view that appears to be in opposition to left-leaning ideology,” he said.
The same criticisms have been levied at Google and Twitter. The latter has gone so far as to remove accounts “used by Republican members of Congress,” according to the Telegraph.
“Within all of our pages under the Free Thought umbrella, we had close to 6 million followers. Does Facebook think it knows better than the 6 million people who clicked like on our page?
We also had close to 16,000 reviews on our page with an average 4.1 star rating, directly showing that people desired to see what we were putting out. The only ones manipulating people here are the tech giants themselves.”
So says Matt Agorist, of the Free Thought Project, a libertarian site that tries to keep the government to account. Police the Police was also removed, while Photography Is Not a Crime has apparently seen their publishing activities restricted.
The matter now appears to have gotten so out of hand, President Trump felt it necessary to be involved, albeit in just verbal criticism. Back in August, he said:
“Social Media Giants are silencing millions of people. Can’t do this even if it means we must continue to hear Fake News like CNN, whose ratings have suffered gravely. People have to figure out what is real, and what is not, without censorship!”
A month later, Facebook removed 12 pages with 30 million followers. “All of the removed pages had recently, and almost exclusively, been promoting links to LifeZette.com, the conservative website founded by Fox News host Laura Ingraham,” Buzzfeed says.
Now, a month on, they’ve removed nearly 600 pages with millions of followers in what may well be a turning point for corporate social media and their role in facilitating or hampering freedom of speech.
Previously, following what Sputnik calls media fueled “Russophobic hysteria,” Facebook limited itself to foreign accounts from Russia. Now, however, they’re purging domestic political accounts run by US citizens.
The narrative thus seems to have moved and with great speed. At first it was some grand conspiracy theory that tens of millions of Americans were fooled by mastermind Putin to vote for Trump, because the failure of Hillary Clinton to produce any result in her 4 decades at the top was not enough.
A conspiracy theory of such grand scale that makes those lizard laluminaty narrations look reasonable by comparison. But then here is another perhaps more real conspiracy:
From Putin mastermind they moved on to this general concept of “fake news,” a term that may well be the most dangerous ever invented since 1940.
“Her arrest came at a time when Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi approved new legislation aimed at targeting people guilty of spreading ‘false news’ about Egypt.
The legislation, signed over the summer, gives the government the power to shut down websites critical of the government, under the guise of combating misinformation.
The laws are strict: just visiting a website considered a ‘threat’ to Egypt could land you in jail.
To make matters worse, the new media law regards individuals with over 5,000 followers on social media as media entities in their own right.
Ordinary social network users are considered to be on the same playing field as large media companies, and they are legally obliged to abide by the strict censorship rules.”
So reports Wired in the context of an individual venting of sexual harassment in Egypt. She is now in prison, something the mainstream media is partly to blame due to their creation of this utterly dangerous “fake news” concept.
A concept that is used in a Machiavellian way to big up billionaire owned old media while deriding the new media, which dares report on matters New York Time or its like would never report on.
The uprising in Bangladesh is a prime example. BBC and the rest did not even mention it on the news slots at the time. Newsnight led with a completely boring story while students were on the streets demanding nothing more than the enforcement of parliament passed laws.
Yet they hold themselves as “objective,” unbiased or impartial, when what you choose to report is necessarily subjective.
Their recent “documentary” on the banking collapse, for example, had only bankers and politicians give their point of view. Some of whom laughed out loud, safe perhaps in the knowledge that no critic would be given the microphone to say just what went on and what went wrong.
And while some like to present this matter as a left or right issue lensed in bogy Russia working against Democrats, Bernie Sanders was given the same treatment. As was Jeremy Corbyn.
This is a freedom of speech matter. Speech that is now under direct threat by billionaires who may well be using left or right as an excuse to re-gain control over all speech so as to once again institute a “signal.” A centralized narration that tells you to obey while they empty your pockets for the utterly idiotic aim of passing billions in inheritance to what may well be their stupid born children and perhaps even more stupid wives for from roses rise thorns and vice versa.
In the land of the free and the home of the brave so they plot, in a treachery that tries to rob us of our democracy. Using the old scapegoats of Russia, or whatever else, to justify a power grab following the revelation that the old media emperor stands completely naked and reads from the same script.
Thankfully online, while social media can be considered as a commons, a town square, there can be millions if not billions of such social media as all one really needs is just a domain name.
Network effects obviously pose a challenge, but as MySpace learned and as perhaps Facebook might be learning, network effects in social media are very weak.
That’s especially the case when novelties like blockchain powered platforms are concerned. Some of which are out, although at a somewhat crude level, with plenty more in refined development, like Akasha.
As the now old tech corporations tighten their grip on freedom loving people, so too one should think the freedom loving people from the left, centre, or right, will slip more and more out of their hands into green and pleasant blockchain lands as their ancestors have for millennials.
For a backlash now is inevitable against these evil forces that are trying to threaten the very first amendment in this 21st century.