As reported by The Daily Wire on Thursday, Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) went after YouTube for their recent crackdown on BlazeTV’s Steven Crowder. The conservative comedian, after complaints from Vox’s Carlos Maza, had all of his videos demonetized by YouTube on Wednesday.
Maza, formerly of Media Matters, flipped over Cruz’s vocal support for free speech and traded words with the Republican.
"This is ridiculous. YouTube is not the Star Chamber — stop playing God & silencing those voices you disagree with. This will not end well," warned Cruz on Thursday. In a subsequent tweet, Cruz posted: "This is nuts. YouTube needs to explain why [Steven Crowder] is banned, but [Samantha Bee] ('Ivanka is a feckless c***.') & [Jim Carrey] ('look at my pretty picture of Gov. Kay Ivey being murdered in the womb') aren’t. No coherent standard explains it. Here’s an idea: DON’T BLACKLIST ANYBODY."
Maza took a shot at Cruz and bizarrely accused YouTube of being biased in favor of "right-wingers."
"A U.S. senator is coming to the defense of someone who spent two years calling me a 'lispy queer,'" responded the Vox employee. "They do this because they know that [YouTube] cares more about looking fair to right-wingers than it does about stopping hate speech and harassment."
In follow-up tweets, Maza claimed that the censorship of right-learning creators on big tech platforms is not actually censorship and railed against so-called "hate speech," a vaguely defined, subjective term.
"Conservatives have spent years arguing that even basic content moderation is a form of 'censorship.' Their goal is to scare platforms like [YouTube] away from enforcing their hate speech policies. And it’s working, because YouTube doesn’t have the guts to protect its creators," he wrote.
"You can’t give these people an inch. They won’t stop crying ‘liberal bias!’ until they’re allowed to use hate speech with impunity. And that’s exactly what [YouTube] is allowing them to do,” Maza added.
"Sigh," replied Cruz. "This individual claims to be a 'journalist.' Then he throws a fit & demands that YouTube CENSOR views he doesn’t like."
"Here’s a crazy idea," offered the senator, "if you don’t like what [Steven Crowder] says, ARGUE AGAINST HIM. Make your case in what John Stuart Mill called the 'marketplace of ideas.'"
On Tuesday, YouTube conceded that Crowder's videos "don’t violate" any of their policies after "conducting an in-depth review of the videos flagged" by Maza. But the platform reversed course after the activist threw a Twitter fit, accusing YouTube of being anti-LGBT and encouraging LGBT employees at the company to "walk out" in protest.
"Update on our continued review–we have suspended this channel’s monetization," YouTube capitulated on Wednesday. "We came to this decision because a pattern of egregious actions has harmed the broader community and is against our YouTube Partner Program policies.”