Joseph Farah warns of Digital Cartel’s increasing suppression of speech
Do you realize how the Google-Facebook Cartel is destroying the independent media in a way that amounts to a first strike against freedom of speech altogether?
There hasn’t been one big story by any news source, including WND, that lays this out clearly and unequivocally. The facts have just leaked out in stories here and there, leaving the public to assemble the information on their own.
So, let’s review what we know – or should know – by now. Frankly, it’s an urgent message of national security and public interest.
This “Digital Cartel,” as I have dubbed it, consisting of these two giant, avowedly “progressive” corporations, now controls more than 75 percent of the digital advertising market. Both employ strict political speech codes designed to determine what is acceptable discourse in the public square – much like what we see on university and college campuses. In the case of Google, these restrictions determine which websites succeed and which fail.
As a result of the policies in place at Google and Facebook, many perceived “right-leaning” online enterprises are deprived of traffic and revenues they would get if they had a different political point of view. While the Internet was once a free-and-open forum for the flow of information and discussion, today information and discussion are being strictly controlled by two major companies with the same “progressive” political agenda.
Do private companies have the “right” to do something like this? The answer is “yes” – except when they dominate the media marketplace to the extent that they become a monopoly or “cartel.” And that’s precisely where we are today. It’s unprecedented. We’ve never experienced anything like this in America before.
Radio and television companies have been prevented by federal cross-ownership rules and antitrust regulations from dominating local markets. But Google and Facebook are doing something similar across the nation and around the world. They literally have no competition.
As a result, businesses like WND, Breitbart, Daily Caller and others are like endangered species because they don’t have the political blessing of Google-Facebook. They are unfairly deprived of traffic and revenue from the dominant search engine and the dominant social media company. They, and many others, are facing catastrophic revenue losses, because the algorithms of Google-Facebook are purposely designed to ensure such sites get bupkis when it comes to traffic and revenue.
But it gets worse.
Did you know the Southern Poverty Law Center sets the standards and implementation for Google’s content guidelines? This is an extremist, left-wing group that labels people like Dr. Ben Carson and companies like WND as “haters” and “extremists” undeserving of access to the public square.
Meanwhile, this week, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg told Congress in open hearings that his company would impose even more strict policing of content – eventually turning it over to carefully programmed “artificial intelligence.”
How much stricter can it get? This week we learned the dynamic duo of Diamond and Silk, two black women who support Donald Trump on their Facebook page, were told they were denied their audience because they were “dangerous.”
Google-owned YouTube routinely scrubs content from conservatives and religious people and companies, such as Prager University, headed by brilliant radio talk-show host and author Dennis Prager. Recently, a judge ruled the company has the right to do that because it is “private.” Not so – the company is public, not private, and, therefore, regulated in its business practice by the federal government.
Where is all this leading?
First they came for Prager University. … Then they came for Diamond and Silk. … Then they came for WND and Breitbart and Daily Caller and a thousand other news sources, information portals, commentators, etc. It reminds me of that famous Martin Niemöller quote.
Soon, the First Amendment will be reduced to words on an ancient piece of paper, and free speech will be dead.
Do I exaggerate?
I fear what we are experiencing at WND is going to become a contagion if something is not done right now to stop it.
If I didn’t believe that what’s happening represents an existential threat to free speech in America, quite honestly, I wouldn’t suggest it. But it does.
After more than 20 years on the internet, we are severely hurting as a result of all this. It’s been developing over time. It has sneaked up on all of us. But the evidence is all around us. It’s compelling. It cannot be denied. And the Digital Cartel, these unaccountable “masters of the universe” who know every movement we make because of their invasive technology, is announcing to the world it is not going to stop its un-American policies of controlling speech.
What can you do about it?