Tag Archive for: internet censorship

Googles’ YouTube To ‘Manipulate Algorithms’ Leading Up to the 2024 Election to ‘Suppress Content’

In a March 28, 2024 Reclaim The Net column titled “YouTube Says It Has a “Responsibility” To Manipulate Algorithms Leading Up to the 2024 Election wrote,

YouTube has a plan to remove and suppress some content, and boost what it decides are “authoritative” sources.

“Responsibility” is a good word. It’s even better as an actual thing. But even just as a word, it’s a positive one. It signals that reliable people/entities are behind some project, or policy.

So no wonder then, that the thoroughly disgraced Google/YouTube – as far as censorship and biased political approach – are trying to use the word “responsibility” as a narrative fig leaf to cover what the giant platform is actually up to – and has been, for a long while.

Enter, YouTube’s newest chief product officer, Johanna Voolich. What are the priorities here? It could be summed up as, four R’s and One C – namely, YouTube’s “remove, raise, reward, reduce” content approach – that’s as per a blog post published by YouTube itself.

And then, C would be speculative, for “censorship” – which is what these supposedly fair and “uplifting” actions in reality end up achieving.

If you thought any of this could be achieved by YouTube without “boosting authoritative content” – think again. That is still a solid pledge, regurgitated by Voolich.

And if you thought somebody would finally come out and clearly spell out how, and according to whose definition, content gets to be dubbed “authoritative” or otherwise – just don’t hold your breath.

The sum total is that YouTube has a new product manager, but that nothing has changed.

Certainly not in this year of election.

Continue reading.

Vlad Tepes Blog reported, “The U.S. Department of Justice ordered YouTube to release the names, phone numbers and addresses of people who watch certain videos.

Googles’ YouTube has “4 Rules of responsibility”:

Rule 1 – “Remove content that violates our policy as quickly as possible.”

Rule 2 – “Raise up authoritative voices when people are looking for breaking news and information.”

Rule 3 – “Reward trusted, eligible creators and artists.”

Rule 4 – “Reduce the spread of content that brushes right up against our policy line.”

These “4-Rs” are effectively “4-Cs” – for total Censorship.

This question and commentary was posted on Google:

Why is Google censoring right wing news sources?

Yes I know, I already read the questions on why is Google biased and read the answers like “it just aggregates information based on what you like.” But my question is if that is so and Google isn’t biased why are certain News sites hidden from view when you search them? Try it, go to Google search bar and type Revolver news and see what happens. The website URL is Revolver.news and you’ll notice that none of the results include this URL, you can also click through the results and non will take to to the actual site (I tested this in incognito). The site isn’t completely censored because you can get to it by typing in the URL but it is hidden from [Google] searches which is highly disturbing. And my question is why?
As November 5th, 2024 approaches it appears that Google’s YouTube will certainly not be an “open” platform, like Rumble and Elon Musk’s X.
I wonder why?

©2024. Dr. Rich Swier. All rights reserved.

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The Biden Admin Is Pursuing Total Domination Of Americans’ Digital Lives

President Joe Biden’s administration has recently taken unprecedented action to exert influence over Americans’ digital lives, including broadband internet, net neutrality, social media and artificial intelligence (AI).

The Biden administration is pushing for the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to claim substantial control over the internet, pursuing a court ruling to gain the right to censor Americans and has issued a broad executive order to regulate AI. Such governmental dominance over the digital realm could have significant adverse effects on American consumers, experts told the Daily Caller News Foundation.

“These latest moves shift the balance between governmental oversight and individual freedoms heavily toward the government,” Internet Accountability Project Founder and President Mike Davis told the DCNF. “Excessive government control from the Biden administration would curtail the very essence of a free and open digital environment, compromising privacy rights and growing the alliance between Big Tech and the federal government.”

For instance, the Biden administration has called upon the Democrat-controlled FCC to implement new rules designed to tackle “digital discrimination,” a move that experts argue would drastically broaden the commission’s regulatory authority. The primary focus of the rules, which the commission will vote on on Nov. 15, is to combat “digital discrimination of access” to broadband internet, as expressed in section 60506 of Biden’s 2021 Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act.

“Biden’s plan would be an unprecedented expansion of regulatory power that grants broad authority to the administrative state over internet services,” Heritage Foundation Tech Policy Center Research Associate Jake Denton told the DCNF. “This plan empowers regulators to shape nearly all aspects of how ISPs [internet service providers] operate, including how they allocate and spend their capital, where they build new broadband infrastructure projects, and what types of offerings are made available to consumers.”

“If enacted, these centralized planning measures could profoundly transform the digital experiences of consumers — a troubling prospect that should worry all Americans about what the future of the internet could look like in this country,” Denton added.

Furthermore, the Biden administration asked the Supreme Court to halt an order that blocked it from engaging in social media censorship after an appeals court partially affirmed it in September. The Supreme Court granted a pause on the injunction in October, but also agreed to consider Missouri v. Biden, a free speech case challenging the administration’s endeavors to suppress social media content, according to a court order.

“President Biden’s pronounced efforts to extend government control over the expansive tech landscape point toward an unprecedented level of government intervention in Americans’ digital lives and basic freedoms,” Davis told the DCNF. “Consolidation of power over the tech space within the government, working in tandem with its corporate allies in Big Tech, will stifle innovation, freedom of speech, and freedom of association. Diversity of ideas and technological advancements will suffer.”

A House Judiciary Committee report published on Monday revealed examples of internet censorship by the federal government, including the Biden administration.

“We see [the Biden administration trying to exercise control of the internet] from the social media side, where there was just new evidence released by [House Judiciary Committee] Chairman Jim Jordan that showed the collusion between the government and social media to censor individual Americans that were simply exercising their free speech rights,” FCC Commissioner Brendan Carr told the DCNF.

Moreover, the FCC is also pushing to restore net neutrality, making a significant move toward reestablishing it in October by voting in favor of a notice of proposed rulemaking. Net neutrality rules force ISPs to provide equal access to all websites and content providers at the same costs and speeds, regardless of size or content.

“We have seen several recent actions that shift from a light touch, free market approach to a more regulatory and precautionary approach including the revival of ‘net neutrality’ … and presumptions that AI should be regulated by the government in a top-down approach,” Cato Institute Technology Policy Research Fellow Jennifer Huddleston told the DCNF. “These actions are concerning as the light touch approach the U.S. has traditionally taken has benefited consumers by allowing entrepreneurs and innovators to enter the market with minimal government intervention or barriers.”

Biden recently signed the first ever AI executive order at the end of October and it is sweeping, covering areas such as safety, security, privacy, innovation and “advancing equity,” according to its fact sheet.

“The through line between all of these various things that are going on, including the administration’s new AI executive order … is there should be nothing that takes place on the internet that the administrative state doesn’t have a say to second guess it,” Carr told the DCNF.

The White House and FCC did not respond to the DCNF’s requests for comment.

AUTHOR

JASON COHEN

Contributor.

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Meet GARM, the World Economic Forum’s Swiss army knife for woke-ifying Planet Earth

The Global Alliance for Responsible Media is attacking the problem of ‘harmful content’.


Sales of Bud Light beer tanked by 21.4 percent in the fallout of the Dylan Mulvaney saga. Apparently frat boys don’t particularly relate to a creepy man prancing about in pink teenage girl costumes.

While big brand Anheuser-Busch has claimed their Bud Light blunder was a one-off, cultural commentator Michael Knowles has uncovered striking evidence to the contrary.

In a Twitter thread this week, Knowles set tongues wagging with the revelation that AB InBev, Bud Light’s parent company in Europe, has signed up to a World Economic Forum initiative that is a veritable holy grail of wokeness.

The Global Alliance for Responsible Media (GARM) dubs itself “a cross-industry initiative established by the World Federation of Advertisers to address the challenge of harmful content on digital media platforms and its monetization via advertising”.

By “harmful content”, GARM means views about climate change, gender, sexuality or race that are more than five minutes old and happen to be grounded in reality.

GARM has created standards that “limit or entirely demonetize platforms that contain ‘hate speech’ on ‘gender identity,’” and “insensitive… treatment of debated social issues”.

Liking what it saw, the World Economic Forum gobbled up GARM as a “flagship project” in its “Platform For Shaping the Future of Media, Entertainment and Culture” just months after the project’s launch in 2019.

As highlighted by Knowles, last year AB InBev spent 105 pages genuflecting to GARM’s wokery in its 2022 Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) report.

Bud Light’s use of Dylan Mulvaney in their advertising, in other words, was anything but a mistake.

“One might think that Bud Light could just apologize and admit that men aren’t women,” Knowles reflected. “But no matter how much Bud Light and parent company AB InBev might wish to rein in the radicalism, they can’t abandon the agenda. They’re mired in World Economic Forum/ESG gobbledygook.”

Knowles adds that “AB InBev has embraced a litany of woke initiatives, from ESG to DEI, along with a full endorsement of transgenderism. They now foot the bill when employees choose to mutilate their bodies.”

And, “AB InBev not only indoctrinates all their managers with ‘unconscious bias training’; it also insists that *external* suppliers submit to the pro-trans ‘diversity’ agenda too.”

Far from being the only company to jump in bed with GARM, Adidas, BP, Goldman Sachs, Lego, Mastercard, McDonald’s, Nike, P&G, Hershey, Disney, Unilever and Walmart, are among the litany of colossal corporations to sell their soul to the World Economic Forum’s woke agenda.

Also under the sway of GARM are all of the biggest social media platforms. Warns Knowles, “GARM is so powerful and controls so much advertising money (like that of Bud Light) that YouTube, Meta (FB & IG), Twitter, TikTok, Snapchat, and others are writing pages of reports as to how they are going to run their platforms to appease GARM standards.”

This revelation alone is bone-chilling, given that GARM’s so-called “misinformation” policies were introduced in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic. Yes, thanks to initiatives like GARM, we were (un)reliably informed that lockdowns were the best thing since sliced bread, the Wuhan lab leak hypothesis was an unhinged conspiracy theory, bodily autonomy is a disposable human right, and the vaccines will most certainly protect against infection and transmission.

Who needs facts when we have thought police like GARM?

In concluding his thread, Knowles warned, “Don’t look away. If we don’t put an end to this growing scheme of control and deceit, Bud Light’s inability to apologize and admit that men can’t be women will be the least of our problems.”

Fortunately there are a few US lawmakers seeking to hold the World Economic Forum to account. Jim Jordan (R-OH), chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, issued subpoenas to GARM’s governing body, the World Federation of Advertisers (WFA). Jordan believes the group may be corralling its constituent members to behave in a way that violates US anti-trust laws.

The outcome of these legal proceedings remains to be seen. But one thing is certain: wokery has transcended colleges, corporations and even culture itself. It’s now a global mob shakedown.

And like Bud Light, it’s on the nose.

AUTHOR

Kurt Mahlburg

Kurt Mahlburg is a writer and author, and an emerging Australian voice on culture and the Christian faith. He has a passion for both the philosophical and the personal, drawing on his background as a graduate… More by Kurt Mahlburg

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‘Slippery Slope’: Internal Docs Show Just One Twitter Employee Raising ‘Serious’ Free-Speech Concerns Over Trump Ban

  • In the immediate aftermath of Jan. 6, a junior staffer at Twitter was the only employee that appeared to express “serious” concerns about the effect that banning then-President Donald Trump might have on users’ speech, according to author Michael Shellenberger Friday, citing internal documents provided by CEO Elon Musk.
  • The unnamed staffer’s comments stood in contrast to other employees, who, according to former head of trust and safety Yoel Roth, were not “happy” with Twitter’s position on Trump following the riots, Shellenberger reported.
  • “This now appears to be a fiat by an online platform CEO with a global presence that can gatekeep speech for the entire world – which seems unsustainable,” the staffer wrote, Shellenberger reported.

As Twitter executives sought a justification to ban then-President Donald Trump in the aftermath of the Jan. 6, 2021, Capitol riots, only one employee appears to have expressed “serious” concerns about the potential impact the move might have on users’ speech, author Michael Shellenberger tweeted Friday, citing internal Twitter documents provided by new CEO Elon Musk.

The employee, a junior staffer, posted a message in a lower-level channel on the company’s internal Slack messaging system, questioning the “one off” nature of the decision, which did not appear to match with Twitter’s public policies, according to Shellenberger. Twitter employees usually considered moderation decisions to be “one off” events when they were made at the discretion of Twitter employees, as opposed to following a particular policy, Shellenberger reported.

“This might be an unpopular opinion but one off ad hoc decisions like this that don’t appear rooted in policy are [in my opinion] a slippery slope and reflect an alternatively equally dictatorial problem,” the unnamed staffer wrote, according to Shellenberger. “This now appears to be a fiat by an online platform CEO with a global presence that can gatekeep speech for the entire world – which seems unsustainable.”

Roughly 40 minutes after the junior staffer posted their initial concerns, they sent a follow-up message, citing an article by The Washington Post’s Will Oremus, then a writer for tech publication OneZero, which noted that Facebook’s decision to indefinitely ban Trump “lacks a clear basis in any of Facebook’s previously stated policies, highlights for the millionth time that the dominant platforms are quite literally making up the rules of online speech as they go along,” Shellenberger reported.

“My concern is specifically surrounding the unarticulated logic of the decision by FB,” the staffer wrote, according to Shellenberger. “That space fills with the idea (conspiracy theory?) that all … internet moguls … sit around like kings casually deciding what people can and cannot see.”

While Twitter employees debated the decision to ban Trump, then-CEO Jack Dorsey was on vacation in French Polynesia, ultimately delegating a significant amount of the company’s actions during the crisis to former head of Trust and Safety Yoel Roth and former head of Legal, Policy and Trust Vijaya Gadde, Shellenberger reported. Dorsey sent staffers an email on Jan. 7 telling employees that the company needs to maintain consistent moderation policies, according to Shellenberger. (RELATED: Twitter’s Chief Censor Met Weekly With US Intelligence Officials While Trump Was In Office, Internal Comms Reveal)

“Jack’s emails have been _fine_… but ultimately, I think people want to hear from Vijaya, or Del, or someone closer to the specifics of this who can reassure them that the people who care about this are thinking deeply about these problems and aren’t happy with where we are,” Roth messaged an unidentified employee, according to Shellenberger. “A few engineers have reached out to me directly about it, and I’m chatting with them… but it’s so clear that they just want to know that _someone_ is doing something about this, and it’s not that we’re ignoring the issues here.”

The unnamed employee responded, arguing that some employees might not understand that “while it seems obvious and simple that we ‘should’ [permanently ban] his personal account,” the company would have to wrangle with the possibility of banning Trump’s official government account as well, a decision that required “thinking things through,” Shellenberger reported.

While the company had faced pressure to block or ban Trump in the past, it typically resisted those calls; the company’s Public Policy team posted a tweet in 2018 which argued banning world leaders for “controversial Tweets would hide important information people should be able to see and debate,” and would limit discussion of that leader without meaningfully silencing them, Shellenberger reported.

Twitter did not immediately respond to request for comment from the Daily Caller News Foundation.

AUTHOR

JOHN HUGH DEMASTRI

Contributor.

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EDITORS NOTE: This Daily Caller column is republished with permission. ©All rights reserved. All content created by the Daily Caller News Foundation, an independent and nonpartisan newswire service, is available without charge to any legitimate news publisher that can provide a large audience. All republished articles must include our logo, our reporter’s byline and their DCNF affiliation. For any questions about our guidelines or partnering with us, please contact licensing@dailycallernewsfoundation.org.

Elon Musk Finally Takes Over Twitter, Fires Top Executives

After a months long legal battle, SpaceX and Tesla CEO Elon Musk officially reached a deal with Twitter on Thursday to become the sole owner of the social media giant in a historic shakeup of the tech industry, according to multiple sources.

The deal, initially agreed upon in April, takes Twitter private at $54.20 per share, a roughly $44 billion transaction that the tech mogul has previously attempted to escape over claims that he was misled about the number of spam or “bot” accounts on the platform. As one of his first moves, Musk reportedly fired several top executives, including CEO Parag Agrawal, chief financial officer Ned Segal, and Vijaya Gadde, head of legal policy, trust, and safety, The Washington Post reported.

Gadde oversaw many content moderation decisions, drawing criticism from conservatives and Republicans for a censorship-heavy approach, and was heavily involved in the decision to kick off former President Donald Trump following the Jan. 6 Capitol riots.

While Musk’s exact plans for the platform are not yet known at time of writing, he has made several public comments, primarily on Twitter itself, stressing the importance of the medium as a forum that protects “free speech,” according to The Washington Post. However, Musk has clearly stated that he intends to reverse the ban on former President Donald Trump’s Twitter account, a decision he characterized as “flat out stupid,” at an event hosted by the Financial Times.

“For Twitter to deserve public trust, it must be politically neutral,” Musk tweeted on April 27, weeks after the initial deal was made. “which effectively means upsetting the far right and the far left equally.”

Musk has also reportedly told investors supporting his bid to purchase the company that he intends to lay off roughly 75% of the tech giant’s staff, cutting the company to just 2,000 workers, The Washington Post reported. Musk has publicly commented that he believes the company is overstaffed, but former Twitter employees and tech analysts have criticized the move as being too drastic, potentially exposing the company to security and moderation issues.

Musk has been vocal about his intention to use Twitter as a stepping stone to create an app known as X, which he describes as “the everything app.” When a Twitter user claimed that it would have been less difficult to simply build X from scratch, Musk countered that the purchase would shave 3 to 5 years of development time, although he hedged the claim by admitting “I could be wrong.”

Critics have argued that a Musk takeover will cause the platform to be more prone to spreading misinformation and incentivize or encourage dangerous practices that will harm women and people of color on the platform, The Hill reported. Angelo Carusone, president of left-wing media watchdog Media Matters, compared Musk’s attempted acquisition to the formation of Fox News, an organization he characterized as having a “distorting effect” on U.S. media, in an interview with The Hill.

“Elon Musk is about to rip open Pandora’s box and flood the internet once again with hate, misogyny, racism and conspiracy theories,” said Bridget Todd, communications director of feminist advocacy organization UltraViolet in an Oct. 4 statement. “We should all be terrified.”

AUTHOR

JOHN HUGH DEMASTRI

Contributor.

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