We are witnessing censorship on a level never before seen in the United States of America. After suspending President Donald J. Trump’s Facebook page indefinitely on Thursday, on Friday, Twitter permanently suspended the president’s account due to “the risk of further incitement of violence.”
After close review of recent Tweets from the @realDonaldTrump account and the context around them we have permanently suspended the account due to the risk of further incitement of violence.https://t.co/CBpE1I6j8Y
— Twitter Safety (@TwitterSafety) January 8, 2021
In explaining its suspension of the president’s account, Twitter stated it warned on Wednesday that additional violations of the Twitter Rules would potentially result in this very course of action. The social media giant apparently reached their decision on Friday after the president tweeted, “The 75,000,000 great American Patriots who voted for me, AMERICA FIRST, and MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN, will have a GIANT VOICE long into the future. They will not be disrespected or treated unfairly in any way, shape or form!!!” Then a short time later, he tweeted he would not be attending the Inauguration on January 20th.
President Trump’s Twitter suspension is the latest in a new wave of extraordinary censorship that began on Friday with the deletion by Facebook of Brandon Straka‘s #WalkAway Campaign page from its site. Straka, who has amassed over half a million followers on his page, indicated that his Facebook group and his personal account were shut down Friday morning. He said, “Over half a million people in #WalkAway with hundreds of thousands of testimonial videos and stories is GONE.” Along with removing the page, Facebook removed the page of every member of the conservative campaign’s team.
One of those team members is our very own Editor-In-Chief Tracy Beanz, who was an admin on Straka’s #WalkAway page on the Zuckerberg platform. Not only was Tracy’s Facebook page removed, but as the day went on, her Twitter account was suspended without warning for supposed “platform manipulation and spam.”
Editor in Chief of UncoverDC @tracybeanz has been banned from Twitter for supposed “platform manipulation and spam”. You’ll find her (and us) on Parler and CloutHub with the same name. And always please go directly to https://t.co/BUJl8BytZB pic.twitter.com/q7DDYLNb79
— UncoverDC (@UncoverDC) January 8, 2021
In what some are labeling as a “Qanon purge,” Twitter also permanently suspended the accounts of General Michael Flynn, Sidney Powell, and several high-profile accounts that supported the President, and the list is growing.
— ClentDC ????™ // Fugazi Placebo (@clentdc) January 8, 2021
The deletion of the accounts by the big tech oligarchy appears to indicate they are expanding their censorship to include those who speak up about alleged election irregularities and voter fraud during the Nov. 3 election.
Conservative commentator Dan Bongino, instead of anticipating when Twitter might make its move to suspend his account, called it quits Friday and announced he is completely moving to Parler, a popular and thriving Twitter alternative of which he is an investor. On Thursday, Sean Hannity announced that President Trump had joined Parler, which might explain why Google Play just decided to suspend Parler from its app store.
JUST IN: Google suspending Parler from the Google Play store pic.twitter.com/Nyv59LoNWh
— Cristiano Lima (@viaCristiano) January 9, 2021
Apple is not far behind, indicating that if Parler did not impose moderation on their free speech platform within 24 hours, they would be banned entirely, writing in an email to Parler executives on Jan. 6, “We have received numerous complaints regarding objectionable content in your Parler service, accusations that the Parler app was used to plan, coordinate, and facilitate the illegal activities. The app also appears to continue to be used to plan and facilitate yet further illegal and dangerous activities.”
Parler CEO John Matze responded to the threat by posting, “Apparently they believe Parler is responsible for ALL user-generated content on Parler. By the same logic, Apple must be responsible for ALL actions taken by their phones. Every car bomb, every illegal cell phone conversation, every illegal crime committed on an iPhone, Apple must also be responsible for.”
Thanks to Section 230, social media platforms find themselves in the position of having immense power. One might argue they have more power than any government. The law states that providers or users of “interactive computer services,” including internet service providers and platforms such as Twitter and Facebook, cannot be treated as publishers of—and thus held liable for—content produced by others. It also enables those companies to freely take actions in “good faith” to moderate content. President Trump called to repeal the law and signed an executive order to attempt to curb some of its protections, though the order has been challenged in court.
Late Friday, the president said in a statement, “Twitter may be a private company, but without the government’s gift of Section 230 they would not exist for long.”