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Tuesday, August 28, 2018

Big tech's Come to Cersei moment

The God-Emperor is going to show them the difference between influence and power:
President Donald Trump doubled down on threats against Facebook, Twitter and Google Tuesday afternoon, saying the social platforms are "treading on very, very troubled territory and they have to be careful."

"Google has really taken advantage of a lot of people and I think that's a very serious thing and it's a very serious charge," Trump told reporters after a meeting with the president of FIFA. "They better be careful because they can't do that to people."

A Twitter spokesperson, when asked to respond to Trump's comments, pointed to previous statements and congressional testimony denying any form of conservative bias on the platform. A spokesperson for Facebook did not immediately return request for comment.

Trump earlier Tuesday accused Google of altering search results to prioritize negative coverage and left-leaning outlets and warned that the issue "will be addressed."

Trump said in a tweet that the tech giant's search engine had "rigged" news story results to show mostly "bad" stories about him and other conservatives.
All he really has to do is strip them of their protections against liability for content. Since they are clearly not content-neutral operations, they have no right to limitations on their liability.

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63 Comments:

Blogger Stg58/Animal Mother August 28, 2018 4:04 PM  

Poor social media companies. I have no doubt they will scream about being oppressed and shut out by the Fascist Nazi Trump.

Blogger Ron Winkleheimer August 28, 2018 4:06 PM  

All he really has to do is strip them of their protections against liability for content. Since they are clearly not content-neutral operations, they have no right to limitations on their liability.

You would think that their lawyers would have informed them that actively policing content makes you a publisher, not a content provider, and therefore liable for what gets published on your platform. I remember when the Internet was new and that was getting thrashed out. Has something changed and I'm not aware of it? Of course the reason they aren't worried is that they accept the government to act as an amenable authority and shield them from the consequences of their actions.

Blogger Ron Winkleheimer August 28, 2018 4:07 PM  

Make that "a publisher, not a service provider."

Blogger Cecil Henry August 28, 2018 4:11 PM  

So what does that do?

IT seems it would make them censor everything they don't like including all right of Lenin ideology.


Sure they would worry about liability, but they would have no need to mask their agenda.

Does that really destroy them?

It doesn't look like it would make them be neutral service providers for content,that's for sure.

Blogger Ron Winkleheimer August 28, 2018 4:26 PM  

Does that really destroy them?

An analogy to the phone company and newspapers is apt. If someone starts calling people up and slandering you the phone company isn't liable but if a newspaper publishes a letter to the editor that libels you, the newspaper is liable because they chose to publish the letter. Are social media companies like the phone company, a common carrier and thus exempt from liability for what people put up on their platforms or are they publishers, making editorial decisions? Looks to me like they are acting like publishers, but expecting to be treated like common carriers. As I said earlier in the thread, either they have really bad lawyers, or they are expecting to be protected from the consequences of their actions by amenable authority.

Blogger Salt August 28, 2018 4:28 PM  

Since they are clearly not content-neutral operations, they have no right to limitations on their liability.

That's the key. Banks and fund raising portals will likely be looking at this too, for as the Louisiana legislator asked of a bank, why are you getting into politics?

Blogger Mr.MantraMan August 28, 2018 4:29 PM  

Their leadership composed of spergy brats who have been spoiled by the grannies of the Left, so they have no clue as what consequences actually are.

Blogger Stg58/Animal Mother August 28, 2018 4:29 PM  

Ron,

I'd say it is definitely the latter.

Blogger pyrrhus August 28, 2018 4:40 PM  

Really, there is no downside to announcing that DOJ is looking into possible antitrust violations by these platforms who are censoring the public, and conspiring to rig elections...You could likely get a consent decree out of some of them.

Blogger SciVo August 28, 2018 4:43 PM  

Cecil Henry wrote:So what does that do?

It turns them into very deep pockets that are legally liable for every leftist slander and every leftist threat that they publish. The resulting feeding frenzy would put the lawsuits against the SPLC to shame. In order to survive financially, they would be forced to either be impartial in the content that they allow (which they're simply too converged to do), or censor everything so heavily as to drive the users away.

Blogger Jehu August 28, 2018 4:43 PM  

Would it be possible to get the ball rolling by filing a libel suit against the various social media companies and challenging their claim of 'common carrier' immunity?

Blogger Weak August 28, 2018 4:44 PM  

Because they never thought that she would lose. They were being good and loyal servants, who expected to be rewarded for this behavior.

Blogger Ron Winkleheimer August 28, 2018 4:48 PM  

"In the United States, telecommunications carriers are regulated by the Federal Communications Commission under title II of the Communications Act of 1934.[5]

The Telecommunications Act of 1996 made extensive revisions to the "Title II" provisions regarding common carriers and repealed the judicial 1982 AT&T consent decree (often referred to as the "modification of final judgment" or "MFJ") that effectuated the breakup of AT&T's Bell System. Further, the Act gives telephone companies the option of providing video programming on a common carrier basis or as a conventional cable television operator. If it chooses the former, the telephone company will face less regulation but will also have to comply with FCC regulations requiring what the Act refers to as "open video systems". The Act generally bars, with certain exceptions including most rural areas, acquisitions by telephone companies of more than a 10 percent interest in cable operators (and vice versa) and joint ventures between telephone companies and cable systems serving the same areas.

The FCC classified Internet Service Providers as common carriers, effective June 12, 2015, for the purpose of enforcing net neutrality.[6] Before that time, the Good Samaritan provision of the Communications Decency Act established immunity from liability for third party content on grounds of libel or slander, and the DMCA established that ISPs that comply with the DMCA would not be liable for the copyright violations of third parties on their network."

https://infogalactic.com/info/Common_carrier#Telecommunications

Notice that the "Good Samaritan provision" of the Communications Decency Act exempts ISPs. Doesn't say a word about blogs or Social Media or webzines. In fact, I bet if Newsweek or CNN published a libel on their websites about some non-public person they would be liable. So, since Twitter and Facebook are attempting to exercise just as much editorial control over what gets published on their platforms, why aren't they just as liable? And its not just libel. Dana Loesch kids got threatened on Twitter a couple of days ago and when a complaint was lodged they said the tweet didn't violate their community standards. They reversed themselves after about 24 hours, probably because it was going to be a PR disaster and also because they consulted their lawyers.

Blogger Marcus Marcellus August 28, 2018 4:48 PM  

As I believe the real divide today is between personhood and transhumanism, this is more important to me than ideological disputes. If they get their nominalist control grid and basically abolish physical reality by mediating all human interactions, no amount of "content" could then topple them.

Blogger Damelon Brinn August 28, 2018 4:51 PM  

Does that really destroy them?

Yes, because their business model requires a critical mass of users. Most people use a social media platform because their friends and those they follow use it. If a third of your friends/follows drop off a platform because their posts were being squelched or they felt like they were being fed a slanted news stream, there's a good chance you'll drop it too. That hurts not only their advertising model, but their selling-user-data-to-everyone model. And it opens the door for a Facebook-kills-MySpace scenario, where users migrate to a service that doesn't drive users away.

Blogger SciVo August 28, 2018 4:52 PM  

To make my reasoning more explicit, I'm asserting that all the big social media companies are so converged that in order to get their Social Justice cultist employees to successfully censor leftist slander and leftist threats, managers would have to set the target and official policy at "crushingly draconian." So one way or the other they would wither into insignificance, whether by inviting lawsuits or driving users away.

Blogger Ron Winkleheimer August 28, 2018 4:56 PM  

This is all pretty well settled law. If you exercise editorial control over what people put on your platform then you can be held liable for the content. Though due to the nature of the platform you might have some limited immunity. For example, if someone posts a libel in the comments of a blog and the blogger doesn't moderate then they are much less likely to be held liable than someone who does moderate the comments section. Especially if they remove the comment in question when requested to do so.

Blogger Damelon Brinn August 28, 2018 5:01 PM  

@16 SciVo, I don't even think they could get them to do it. On online forums that have a strict no-politics policy, you can spot the SJWs, because they just can't help themselves. And they're thoroughly convinced that whatever wokeness they share is only fair and righteous. If a social media company told its SJWs that they had to treat all the leftist Hollywood celebrities the same way they want to treat James Woods, for instance, they'd have a revolt on their hands.

Anonymous Anonymous August 28, 2018 5:03 PM  

Trust-busting TR..ump!

Blogger HtF August 28, 2018 5:04 PM  

Why not AntiTrust their happy-asses?

Blogger James Dixon August 28, 2018 5:07 PM  

> Notice that the "Good Samaritan provision" of the Communications Decency Act exempts ISPs. Doesn't say a word about blogs or Social Media or webzines.

Exactly. As a content provider, if they filtered only for illegal posts, they would probably be safe. An argument could also be make for profanity and explicit content when the site claims to be family friendly. Otherwise, they're not covered, exactly as others have said.

What's worse is that the degree of such censoring is so great it undoubtedly qualifies for a class action case with millions of clients.

Blogger James Dixon August 28, 2018 5:08 PM  

> Why not AntiTrust their happy-asses?

Why not both? A multi-pronged attach is usually more effected than a single one.

Blogger CitizenOutkast August 28, 2018 5:10 PM  

SciVo wrote:In order to survive financially, they would be forced to either be impartial in the content that they allow (which they're simply too converged to do), or censor everything so heavily as to drive the users away.

Imagine how bad the moderation would have to be for a platform filled with perpetually offended screaming leftists. Either every post would have to be held until it could be scanned, or you'd have to have a ton of moderators. With the way the hate-filled, seething leftists are these days, you'd practically need a 1:1 ratio.

Blogger Nostromo August 28, 2018 5:13 PM  

@Damelon Brinn. Your response is the reason we need a thumbs up tick.

Blogger ace August 28, 2018 5:13 PM  

Sundial Pikachu was born in India, naturalizes as a US citizen, and has the gall to snub the Senate. What a faithless ass.

Blogger Lance E August 28, 2018 5:18 PM  

>denying any form of conservative bias on the platform...

Interesting little slip-up there, I don't think anyone ever accused them of having a conservative bias.

Blogger cmbaileytstc August 28, 2018 5:21 PM  

OT: Are the Germans finally in open rebellion against the invasion?

Blogger Ron Winkleheimer August 28, 2018 5:22 PM  

Before the DOJ started investigating Microsoft in the 90s for violating the anti-trust laws MS would brag about not using lobbyists in DC. Then they started accumulating enough wealth to attract the attention of the grifters we call politicians and suddenly MS is being accused of being a monopoly for distributing a web browser with its OS. So MS hires some DC influence peddlers and that goes away. The reason Google, Facebook, Twitter, etc haven't been facing anti-trust charges and being busted up is because their already in on the graft. Uncle Sam came a knocking and Silicon Valley answered the door and gave Sam a hearty handshake and a friendly greeting. I'm in the camp that says a lot of the black budget goes to finance social media companies and Google. We are in a surveillance state where the surveillance has been out-sourced to private companies. Trump being elected is a disaster for big tech. If the Republicans hold the house then I would expect TGE to start addressing this issue after November.

Blogger tublecane August 28, 2018 5:25 PM  

I hadn't used Google for a while and went back to it to discover that they put little "didja know" paragraphs at the top of the page when I searched for things, telling me what I should believe about them.

I also find about 90% of the names I search will autocomplete "Is [blank] an anti-semite?" Weird, huh?

Blogger LAZ August 28, 2018 5:30 PM  

I noticed last week that Neon Revolt went from first hit on google to somewhere in the middle of the 5th search page. Yeah, not biased at all.

Blogger Howard Stone August 28, 2018 5:38 PM  

If one of the Trump’s started their own social media platform and called it Trumpet or something like that it would be an overnight success, especially if The President used it.

Blogger tz August 28, 2018 5:39 PM  

The safe harbor provision is something that should not be controversial, even to libertarians. The whole reason they can exist is because there isn't liability. They just have to remove content that is reported as being illegal - copyright or threats, etc.

But if you have an editorial board or algorithm, you are a publisher.

Blogger Howard Stone August 28, 2018 5:44 PM  

But this seems too obvious. I wouldn’t be surprised if there will be a TNN in the near future.

Blogger tuberman August 28, 2018 6:34 PM  

Just IMHO, but I think Trump intends to send people in to take these organizations over...another trap.

Blogger tuberman August 28, 2018 6:42 PM  

He will use Silicon Valley as his first example for Mockingbird, and they are all Mockingbird, as not one has their own voice.

Blogger Don't Call Me Len August 28, 2018 6:44 PM  

OT -Anyone else see the latest from Pope Nimrod? "The Pope knows we have a bigger agenda. He's got to get on with other things, of talking about the environment and protecting migrants and carrying on the work of the church. We're not going to go down a rabbit hole on this." — Cardinal Cupich

https://twitter.com/EsotericCD/status/1034546838102265856

Blogger Man of the Atom August 28, 2018 6:53 PM  

Why wait for anti-trust? Social media that offers to host a person or business engaged in a for-profit venture, then removes that platform for reasons other than legal one is engaged in Restraint of Trade and Fraud.

Anyone so deplatformed should report the platform to the FTC. Let the Social Media giants deal with a few thousand complaints to tie up their legal legions for a few years.

Blogger dvdivx August 28, 2018 6:55 PM  

Sadly I don't think these companies will do anything. They will just double down and deny anything even in the face of evidence. Its almost like someone wrote a book about these types doubling down.

Blogger Jack Amok August 28, 2018 7:12 PM  

Why not AntiTrust their happy-asses?

Unfortunately, that would require Sessions taking action.

Blogger The Kurgan August 28, 2018 7:37 PM  

And session is a chickenshit. Is my current view.

Blogger OneWingedShark August 28, 2018 7:53 PM  

VD wrote:All he really has to do is strip them of their protections against liability for content. Since they are clearly not content-neutral operations, they have no right to limitations on their liability.
That would be pretty interesting to watch.
The other thing he could do, which would hit the Tech & Entertainment industries both, would be a strict reading of Article 1, Section 8, Clause 8: while a corporation can be a person, legally speaking, they cannot be 'authors' or 'inventors', instead merely commissioning employees who are. Thus the patents and copyrights granted to corporations would be invalid. — I'd wager you'd see Congress amend the Constitution so fast it'd make your head spin… which would be definitive proof that the Congress is bought and paid for by the corporate-world and thinks itself not beholden to the public.

pyrrhus wrote:Really, there is no downside to announcing that DOJ is looking into possible antitrust violations by these platforms who are censoring the public, and conspiring to rig elections…You could likely get a consent decree out of some of them.
There've been antitrust proceedings over less colluded space; recall several years ago the major RAM-manufacturers got into some trouble over price fixing. (Looks like it's happening again.)

James Dixon wrote:> Why not AntiTrust their happy-asses?

Why not both? A multi-pronged attach is usually more effected than a single one.

I agree. Plus there's a lot that can be done simply by enforcing laws that have been ignored/selectively-enforced for so long that they think it their right, essentially counting on the "Too Big To Fail" mentality/reasoning and political expediency to trump actual law. (As Ron Winkleheimer said in @2: “Of course the reason they aren't worried is that they accept the government to act as an amenable authority and shield them from the consequences of their actions.”)

Ron Winkleheimer wrote:Before the DOJ started investigating Microsoft in the 90s for violating the anti-trust laws MS would brag about not using lobbyists in DC. Then they started accumulating enough wealth to attract the attention of the grifters we call politicians and suddenly MS is being accused of being a monopoly for distributing a web browser with its OS. So MS hires some DC influence peddlers and that goes away. The reason Google, Facebook, Twitter, etc haven't been facing anti-trust charges and being busted up is because their already in on the graft. Uncle Sam came a knocking and Silicon Valley answered the door and gave Sam a hearty handshake and a friendly greeting. I'm in the camp that says a lot of the black budget goes to finance social media companies and Google. We are in a surveillance state where the surveillance has been out-sourced to private companies. Trump being elected is a disaster for big tech. If the Republicans hold the house then I would expect TGE to start addressing this issue after November.
You bring up some good points, and this is one reason why I wouldn't shed any tears for "destroying the Tech industry" by ripping away all their IP as I described above; destroying the IP scam-industry —patent trolling, the "everything you [ever] make belongs to us"-clauses in contracts, the way institutions will sit on a patent, etc— would be a major step in cleaning out corruption in government.

Blogger James Dixon August 28, 2018 7:57 PM  

> "...We're not going to go down a rabbit hole on this." — Cardinal Cupich

Q often seems to refer to the "rabbit hole".

I swear they practically set themselves up.

Blogger Lazarus August 28, 2018 8:01 PM  

Trump does not start trash talking before he has a strategy laid out. Call-response is part of the set-up stage.

Blogger Stg58/Animal Mother August 28, 2018 8:06 PM  

He's setting the bait, waiting for them to rush into the trap.

Blogger Al Du Clur August 28, 2018 8:45 PM  

"All he really has to do is strip them of their protections against liability for content. Since they are clearly not content-neutral operations, they have no right to limitations on their liability."

Yes. But that involves more than tweeting. Better to think of a way he can defeat them with tweets.

Blogger Dirtnapninja August 28, 2018 8:47 PM  

Classic trump. Negotiations have begun!

Blogger Stg58/Animal Mother August 28, 2018 8:54 PM  

Does Big Tech know?

Blogger Jack Ward August 28, 2018 8:59 PM  

@39 and 40

Maybe. However, I suspect all the Sessions critics will, soon enough, per the Plan, be having large servings of raw crow for three meals a day until further notice.
Jeff Sessions has a solid gold reputation here in Alabama and that part of DC that is honest [small to nothing, but measurable].
Trump has a plan. Its become obvious. We just don't yet know the details. I feel that any verbal criticism of Jeff Sessions by Trump is probably a smoke screen to give him a bit of protection and some space to do the work needed to 'drain the swamp' without destroying the country. I, for one, am looking with great relish to the explosives which 'The Plan' will unleash. Be patient and have plenty of popcorn and bourbon ready. You have been warned.

Blogger Jack Amok August 28, 2018 9:44 PM  

Maybe. However, I suspect all the Sessions critics will, soon enough, per the Plan, be having large servings of raw crow for three meals a day until further notice.

There's nothing I'd like better.

But in the mean time, do you think maybe we could at least put the bike-log guy in jail? Or Apu-the-IT guy? Maybe one stinkin' sign of activity so guys like you don't sound like Admiral Purple-Hair Ballgown from the last crappy Star Wars movie with the double-super-secret plan.

Blogger Johnny August 28, 2018 10:02 PM  

@48 & @49 What we know about Sessions for sure is is reluctance to act. Could be he just doesn't want to take the heat.

As for Google search stuff, it has been apparent to me for a while that the company has all sorts of hidden agendas. The latest thing is the extent to which McCain gets friendly treatment. The negative stuff is there but way down the stack. You got to dig for it.

Blogger Jason August 28, 2018 10:49 PM  

How long do you think any of them (all with deep pockets dont forget) would last if they were liable for any libel on thier platform?

They have deep pockets it makes them an eady target.

Blogger Jason August 28, 2018 11:23 PM  

You would have a hard case to make. You probably cant break google up (for example) because the only part that makes money is the ads. Most of the rest of the business is either PR or provides info and fodder for the ads division.

They could reasonably argue you will destroy whatever you break off and put people out of work.

Blogger Jack Amok August 29, 2018 1:44 AM  

As for Google search stuff, it has been apparent to me for a while that the company has all sorts of hidden agendas.

Something nominally unrelated to politics I've noticed in the major search engines over the last year is fewer hits for alternative medicine and nutrition info. There was a website with keto diet resources that I remember finding via Google a couple of years ago that - ten pages in - I couldn't find a month ago. I finally managed to dig up an old bookmark from a laptop I thought was dead, and the site was still alive.

Same thing with vaccination information.

Stuff that was at the top of search results two years ago is dissapeared now.

Blogger Jack Amok August 29, 2018 1:46 AM  

You probably cant break google up (for example) because the only part that makes money is the ads. Most of the rest of the business is either PR or provides info and fodder for the ads division.

They could reasonably argue you will destroy whatever you break off and put people out of work.


Fuck em. Break em up and make the non-ad (i.e. the propaganda parts) pay their own way while the ad business slowly dies from it's inability to prove it actually does anyone any good.

Anti-Trust isn't about rational economics. It's pure power.

Blogger Expendable Faceless Minion August 29, 2018 3:42 AM  

They are still loyal servants to the Stalinists amd are making long term investments, which they absolutely expect to be profitable when the pendulum swings back.

Blogger Dire Badger August 29, 2018 3:52 AM  

Jack Ward wrote:I, for one, am looking with great relish to the explosives which 'The Plan' will unleash. Be patient and have plenty of popcorn and bourbon ready.

I don't want popcorn and Bourbon, I want the legal right to shoot wetbacks and ragheads, and hang abortionists.

Sometimes you have to take pleasure in the simple things.

Blogger John Bradley August 29, 2018 3:59 AM  

Abortionists get a bad name, but they do some good work. Without their stalwart efforts in the urban hellholes over the past 40+ years, whites might already be a minority in this country. With the predictable results.

Blogger Dire Badger August 29, 2018 4:24 AM  

Spoken like a true atheist.

Blogger Damelon Brinn August 29, 2018 8:25 AM  

I assume Google Ads could pay a separate company called Google Search to put ads on their service, the same way they pay other sites through Adsense. I don't know whether that would be enough to make Google Search profitable, but if not, that sounds like a them problem. Let their smart Asians figure it out; we've been told many times they're the best.

Blogger MrNiceguy August 29, 2018 10:49 AM  

The original wording in the statement was "altar-boy hole" but that was just a Freudian slip.

Blogger SirHamster August 29, 2018 7:38 PM  

John Bradley wrote:Abortionists get a bad name, but they do some good work. Without their stalwart efforts in the urban hellholes over the past 40+ years, whites might already be a minority in this country. With the predictable results.

Murdering the soul of your own people is not worth the bodycount in others.

Blogger justaguy August 30, 2018 12:07 AM  

#41: IP law isn't as you stated. Patents and copyright are granted to authors-- meaning people. However as IP is a property, it can be transferred. Think about not allowing companies to own patents and other types of property and wonder how industry gets built?

Blogger Johnny Reb August 30, 2018 10:25 AM  

Damn right. Well said!!!

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