Dangers of Leaving Censorship to Social Media Moguls | Busselton-Dunsborough Courier
Everyone has the right to freedom of opinion and expression; this right includes the freedom to hold opinions without interference and to seek, receive and impart information and ideas through all media and regardless of frontiers: Article 19 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, proclaimed by the UN in 1948.
This world was still very raw from WWII and the obvious damage that was done when the Third Reich established a Propaganda Ministry in 1933.
He took control of the national education of the German people with control of schools, universities, cinema, radio and the press.
Keep that in mind with Google’s latest ad. A new Google policy, which includes YouTube, will ban ads and monetization for content that contradicts the existence and causes of climate change.
It follows a general ban on disinformation about vaccines and a ban on distribution channels for people identified as anti-vaccines.
Facebook also removes posts containing information containing false vaccine claims and uses labels to notify users when the information posted is questionable.
Former Facebook moderators say Facebook’s censorship rules include things like hate speech, racism, and criticism of Facebook and … hang on. This last ?
Social media organizations have greater influence in the world than any government.
YouTube has 2.3 billion users who watch over a billion hours of video every day. Facebook has 2.79 billion users, 73% of whom use it daily.
Social media organizations are not governments elected by the people. They are companies focused on making profit for shareholders. If your business review is bad for profits, delete these posts!
Censorship usually has negative connotations, but I don’t know a lot of people who wouldn’t be in favor of removing child pornography images – which is censorship.
And this is where the problem lies. When the governments of France, Germany and Austria all independently decided to introduce laws prohibiting the spread of Holocaust denial, a public and transparent process was undertaken by elected leaders.
When a social media giant decides to censor, say, criticism of their organization, that’s hidden censorship. When the Facebook CEO was questioned by the US Senate, he admitted that, even with their policies in place, it can be difficult for their AI and their moderators to decide what to censor.
If social media had existed for hundreds of years, some now well-accepted scientific concepts would have been labeled misinformation or suppressed.
In 1632, Galileo published a book which implicitly implied that the earth revolved around the sun. The following year he was convicted of heresy and spent the rest of his life under house arrest.
Ignaz Semmelweis was an obstetrician who published evidence in 1847 that doctors who washed their hands before giving birth had mothers with lower death rates. Worse than having a disinformation label, he was locked in an insane asylum for pushing his crazy ideas.
In 1912, Alfred Wegener proposed the concept of continental drift. He was categorically rejected and his ideas mocked.
Now I have opinions on climate change denial and vaccination and I base those opinions on the scientific data available now, but article 19 says that everyone has the right to freedom of opinion.
Leaving censorship in the hands of companies with such influence and striving to generate profits seems to me to be a danger.
Tell me what you think. Email [email protected] and let me know if you think we should have individual companies setting their censorship policies or if the UN could have a place in this discussion.
- Mathew Dickerson is a technologist, futurist and host of the Tech Talk podcast.