The biggest names in social media are cracking down on news. In particular, they’re cracking down disproportionately on conservative news. That’s not necessarily out of malice; it’s probably due to the fact that our major social-media sites are staffed thoroughly with non-conservatives who have no objective frame of reference when it comes to the news business.
Thus, Google biases its algorithm to prevent people from searching for guns online in shopping; temporarily attached fact-checks from leftist sites like Snopes and PolitiFact to conservative websites but not leftist ones; showed more pro-Clinton results than pro-Trump results in news searches; and, of course, fired tech James Damore for the sin of examining social science in the debate over the wage gap. Google’s bias is as obvious as the “doodles” it chooses for its logos, which routinely feature left-wing icons and issues.
YouTube has demonetized videos from conservatives while leaving similar videos up for members of the Left. Prager University has watched innocuous videos titled “Why America Must Lead,” “The Ten Commandments: Do Not Murder,” and “Why Did America Fight the Korean War?” demonetized (i.e. barred from accepting advertisements) at YouTube’s hands. Prager’s lawyer explains, “Google and YouTube use restricted mode filtering not to protect younger or sensitive viewers from ‘inappropriate’ video content, but as a political gag mechanism to silence PragerU.”
Facebook was slammed two years ago for ignoring conservative stories and outlets in its trending news; now Facebook has shifted its algorithm to downgrade supposedly “partisan” news, which has the effect of undercutting newer sites that are perceived as more partisan, while leaving brand names with greater public knowledge relatively unscathed. Facebook’s tactics haven’t just hit conservative Web brands — they’ve destroyed the profit margins for smaller start-ups like LittleThings, a four-year-old site that fired 100 employees this week after the algorithm shift reportedly destroyed 75 percent of the site’s organic reach (the number of people who see a site’s content without paid distribution).
And Twitter has banned nasty accounts perceived as right-wing while ignoring similar activity from the left. James O’Keefe recently exposed the practice of “shadowbanning,” in which Twitter hides particular content or mutes particular hashtags for political purposes. That’s no coincidence: Twitter head Jack Dorsey is an ardent leftist who has campaigned with radicals like DeRay Mckesson, and whose company relies on the input of an Orwellian Trust and Safety Council staffed thoroughly with left-wing interest groups.