Computers Do Not Kill Thought, People Do

WHY ARE SOCIAL-MEDIA COMPANIES CENSORING CONTENT?

by Stephen Thomas, ©2018

Screenshot from John Stossel’s “Socialism Leads to Violence” video

(Dec. 8, 2018) — In their most recent attack on free speech, the Google machine at YouTube attempted to silence Libertarian John Stossel.  He has published a YouTube video entitled “Socialism Leads To Violence” which was almost immediately shut down and subsequently republished.  Last Wednesday in a Townhall article, “The Creepy Line” Stossel said, “This morning Google told me that it would not allow my YouTube video ‘Socialism Leads to Violence’ to be viewed by young people. It violates ‘community guidelines,’ said the company in a computer-generated email.”

The video is a four-minute documentary exposing the corrosive and deadly effects of socialism in Venezuela and Nicaragua.  There are many examples of violent, inappropriate content directed at young people and allowed by YouTube which makes Stossel’s video seem tame by comparison.  Apparently, left-leaning Google executives and their programmers do not like the negative exposure conservative videos provide to what appears to be their corporate agenda.

The programming engineers at Google have devised their software to shut down “free” speech that does not align with their leftist, socialist, progressive (communistic) ideals.  If those of the younger generations do not wake up to what is and has happened to them they will certainly be forced to repeat and experience the failures of the totalitarian form of government described as “socialism.”  Socialism is the means to a communist end.

These efforts go beyond Google and are being practiced by Facebook, Twitter, and other tech companies with their cadres of left-leaning management and software engineers.  This is not the first example of a shutdown of ideas contrary to theirs and will certainly not be the last. Unless market forces or, the less desirable, government regulation compels “fairness” upon their corporate culture there will be diminishing hope for the presentation and dissemination of conservative thought.

Stossel obtained his op-ed title from the documentary entitled “The Creepy Line by Peter Schweizer.  Eric Schmidt, the former CEO for Google, coined the “creepy line” phrase when he said, “The Google policy on a lot of things is to get right up to the creepy line and not cross it.” The documentary reports that too much power has been entrusted into the hands of too few and Google crosses the creepy line every day.  Examining what Google and Facebook do on their “neutral platforms,” the documentary exposes how they extract and use your private and personal data to manipulate society.

Enforcing fairness through market forces must begin with us, and it will be extremely hard for most of us to shake the Google/Facebook/Twitter habit.  Last week I discontinued my Twitter account and next week will be looking into Google alternatives. I have used my wife’s Facebook link to occasionally check the “marketplace” feature so dropping Facebook usage won’t be too hard for me.  Dumping the world’s top search engine and exchanging my email accounts will be a time-consuming and burdensome task. And, what alternative is there to YouTube?

It is fair to say that having the world’s knowledge a few clicks away is one of the great luxuries of our time.  But the people who control these wonderful platforms are creating a serious issue that, sooner rather than later, must be dealt with.

Computers do not kill thought, people do.

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