OPINION: Tech Totalitarians Are Silencing Social Media Dissent

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By Arnold Ahlert, The Patriot Post, 

“Now if you’re conservative, it might be difficult to get your head around what is happening in this country. So much has changed. The federal government is no longer the main threat to your privacy and to your freedoms. You’ve grown up thinking that; it’s no longer true. Big corporations are the main threat to your freedom and your privacy.” —Fox News host Tucker Carlson

Carlson is spot on. Leftists are apparently so fearful of competing in the arena of ideas, they are literally eliminating those competing ideas — and often, the people who espouse them — at the social websites more and more Americans use to communicate with each other, or get their “news.”

And these very same corporate entities, replete with people best described as fascist-minded tech nerds, are also determined to eliminate privacy.

We begin with Project Veritas’ undercover investigation revealing1 that Twitter is infested with techies willing to “ban a way of talking,” as engineer Steven Pierre puts it.

How? Former Twitter Software Engineer Abhinov Vadrevu reveals the company uses a technique called “shadow banning.” “The idea of a shadow ban is that you ban someone but they don’t know they’ve been banned, because they keep posting and no one sees their content,” he explains. “So they just think that no one is engaging with their content, when in reality, no one is seeing it.”

Pierre reveals such banning is being automated. “Every single conversation is going to be rated by a machine and the machine is going to say whether or not it’s a positive thing or a negative thing,” he states.

Olinda Hassan, a Policy Manager for Twitter’s Trust and Safety team, notes the company is also working on a “down ranking” system, aimed at “trying to get the shi—y people to not show up.”

Who are those people? Content Review Agent Mo Norai admitted the site “would manually ban or censor Pro-Trump or conservative content.” Direct messaging engineer Pranay Singh was even clearer, stating, “Just go to a random [Trump] tweet and just look at the followers. They’ll all be like, guns, God, ‘Merica, and with the American flag and the cross.”

He also explains how Twitter mass-bans such peoples’ accounts. “You look for ‘Trump,’ or ‘America,’ or any of, like, five thousand, like, keywords to describe a redneck, and then you look, and you parse all the messages, all the pictures, and then look for stuff that matches that stuff. … You assign a value to each thing, so like Trump would be .5, a picture of a gun would be like 1.5, and if the total comes up above a certain value, then it’s a bot,” he reveals.

Alphabet, which owns Google, has an equally effective “curating” system, and as Daily Caller Tech and Law reporter Eric Lieberman discovered2, the “fact checks” displayed in their search engine results almost exclusively target conservative sites. “And not only is Google’s fact-checking highly partisan — perhaps reflecting the sentiments of its leaders — it is also blatantly wrong,” he adds, “asserting sites made ‘claims’ they demonstrably never made.”

Former Google employee James Damore, fired3 for writing a 10-page memo suggesting the gender gap in certain workplace positions may have to do with the inherent differences between men and women themselves, has filed a lawsuit4 against the company. Screenshots from that suit reveal5 a poisonous culture best described by employee Alon Altman, who wrote, “We want to be inclusive of people not ideas.”

That mindset was reinforced at an Inclusion and Diversity Summit Damore attended, one where Google employees insisted “demographic diversity” is far more important than “viewpoint diversity.”

Diversity? Ideological purity is more like it. Purity employees are actually awarded a “peer bonuses” for defending.

Far more concerning? Between December 2016 and December 2017, Google’s worldwide search engine market share6 was 91.79%. In short, billions of people are being fed a “curated” worldview where progressive ideology reigns supreme. Moreover YouTube, which is owned by Google, has the very same progressive-driven agenda7.

So does Facebook. In 2016, Gizmodo revealed8 several former Facebook news curators admitted they “routinely suppressed news stories of interest to conservative readers from the social network’s influential ‘trending’ news section … even though they were organically trending among the site’s users.” Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg denied9 the allegations, but Heat Street columnist William Hicks documented10 10 incidents where Facebook censored conservatives, and noted the website “routinely shuts down pages and blocks users simply for stating right-of-center opinions.”

There are innumerable other examples of such bias — and the all too common cop-out of blaming11 them on faulty algorithms — but it is only half the problem. The other half is the virtual elimination of privacy.

In 2013, Alternet columnist Pratap Chatterjee illuminated12 the scope of the problem. He explained, “Inside your mobile phone and hidden behind your web browser are little known software products marketed by contractors to the government that can follow you around anywhere.”

In 2016, Newsweek’s Paul Boutin warned13 that there are “data brokers” who can provide their clientele “a person’s ethnicity, spending habits, sexual orientation, and specific illnesses such as HIV, diabetes, depression or substance abuse,” and that it’s “practically impossible for anyone to find all the information being passed around about themselves, or to correct it.”

Moreover Americans, especially those enamored by the reach and/or convenience that social media sites, Internet Service Providers and Internet retailers provide, must learn that even what they believe are private messages are nothing of the sort. As Project Veritas reveals14, Twitter senior network security engineer Clay Haynes bragged his company would be “more than happy” to give the government “every single tweet that [Trump’s] posted. Even the ones he’s deleted, any direct messages, any mentions…”

In short, Big Brother is watching — all the deletions in the world notwithstanding.

Security? Last September, Equifax admitted15 the personal information of 143 million Americans — as in nearly half the country — had been obtained by hackers. An unlucky 209,000 of those Americans had credit card numbers exposed, while 182,000 had “personal identifying information” revealed as well.

Regardless, tech marches on. A website called Cheddar claims16 Facebook will soon release “Portal,” a $499 piece of hardware aimed at competing with other voice-controlled “smart speaker17” devices that trash privacy for convenience sake. Portal will feature the same voice controls, but will also come with a 15-inch screen and a wide-angle camera with facial recognition, that allows one to access one’s Facebook account without a password.

As Washington Post reporter Simon Denyer explains18, facial recognition is being enthusiastically embraced — by Communist China’s police and security state. And in a stunning display of hypocrisy, here are several pictures19 of Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg and his several computers — all with masking tape on their cameras.

Can this orchestrated assault on freedom and privacy be stopped? Americans must demand nationally televised congressional hearings to hold accountable the de facto indoctrination centers more familiarly known as public schools and colleges, currently producing legions of would-be totalitarians, comfortable with destroying history, suppressing speech and obliterating privacy.

Unless this battle is engaged, America will become a republic in name only, controlled by an oligarchy of tech titans, answerable to no one but themselves.