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We should not silently accept censorship by Big Tech

By Scott Tibbs, November 2, 2018

Now that Liberty Memes has been banned by Facebook, it is a good time to re-examine the issue of social media censorship and how we should react to it. I often disagreed with the content Liberty Memes posted, but they were mostly harmless. They would post jokes, and depending on your viewpoint you found it funny or not. They certainly did not deserve to have all of the content they have posted for years banished from the platform.

Facebook has been increasingly aggressive in both censoring conservative content and hiding that content so that people did not see it. I knew it would be only a matter of time before the censorship got worse. I mostly ignored the warnings about Big Tech censoring Alex Jones, because I find Jones to be a detestable moral degenerate. But the warnings were right: Jones and InfoWars were the canary in the coal mine to test how much conservatives would put up with in terms of censorship.

So yes, libertarians actually were next. Censorship does not start with the most mainstream content. It starts with the fringe and the low-hanging fruit. Conservatives need to realize that many on the Left - including many in Big Tech - see no difference between Alex Jones and Paul Ryan. We are just different shades of the same color. It is becoming more clear that the censorship is only beginning.

It is true that Facebook, Twitter and Google own their "platforms" and can set their own rules. But we should not simply shrug our shoulders and assert Big Tech's property rights. As Chris Spangle said, when we do that we are useful idiots. In every form of business, if we get bad service or a bad product, we complain - and we are right to do so. We should complain when Big Tech invents new "rules" or drastically over-applies old rules so that content that was never objectionable before is now a ban-worthy offense.

Most of all, we should start thinking about alternatives. When Big Tech tells us we are not welcome, where do we go? Will Facebook really be able to brush off fifty or seventy-five million conservatives shutting down their accounts to go somewhere more friendly to free speech? More importantly, will their advertisers then start demanding less censorship?