Facebook Is Keeping Trump Off Its Platform

Facebook’s oversight board upheld the company’s decision to ban former President Donald Trump Wednesday morning.

“The Board found that, in maintaining an unfounded narrative of electoral fraud and persistent calls to action, Mr. Trump created an environment where a serious risk of violence was possible,” the board said in a statement.

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Former President Trump Launches New Communications Platform ‘From the Desk of Donald J. Trump’

Donald Trump

Former President Trump has launched a new platform to communicate with the public, adding a page on donaldjtrump.com that looks something like a social media feed.

The page headlined “From The Desk of Donald J. Trump,” includes statements from Trump as well as a video at the very top of the feed apparently advertising the new communications outlet.

The posts have buttons for people to share to Twitter and Facebook. “This is just a one-way communication,” a source informed Fox News. “This system allows Trump to communicate with his followers.”

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'Deplorable' Professor Creates 'Anti-Indoctrination Mill' with New Education Startup

Michael Rectenwald

Michael Rectenwald got himself chased out of New York University when the self-identified communist copped to tweeting against trigger warnings, safe spaces and bias reporting under the pseudonym “Deplorable NYU Prof.”
The professor left two years ago with a golden parachute — the result of a legal settlement with the private university that included a retirement package.
He’s not content anymore with just writing polemical books and fiction in retirement. Now Rectenwald is scouting for academics to join an educational startup, American Scholars, that is launching this summer.

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Commentary: Use Twitter’s New Weakness to Start Upending Big Tech

Person holding phone up with Twitter sign up page on smart phone.

Twitter’s stock fell 15 percent last week apparently because they’re not getting sufficient numbers of new users to please the market. People are not as intrigued as they used to be with an allegedly open social media platform that’s not really open, in fact is something of a dictatorship.

I know you’re not supposed to kick someone when they’re down. But when that someone has been acting in the most unAmerican, peremptory ways for years, as if the Bill of Rights never existed, censoring people without explanation—even a former president—blocking free discussion of medical science, for Heaven’s sake, and treating conservatives and libertarians pretty much the way Ferdinand and Isabella treated the Jews before they finally kicked them out of Spain, it’s time to take action.

And, when that “down” is the first chink in the armor of Big Tech that has dominated discourse in this country and around the world to a degree never thought possible, it is all the more urgent to let that foot fly and jump up and down on top a little as well if necessary.

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Documents Reveal Twitter Failed to Properly Register in Florida Before Doing Business There

Government documents from Florida show that social media giant Twitter failed to properly file to do business in the state, incurring a fine for transacting business there without the official permission of state officials.

The documents, available on the website of the Florida Department of State’s Division of Corporations, show that in March the department received from Twitter an “application by foreign corporation for authorization to transact business in Florida.”

The application reveals that Twitter “first transacted business in Florida” in June 2015, apparently well before it registered to do business there. A letter sent back to Twitter by the department indicates that the social media company failed to properly register with the state, potentially for many years.

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Twitter Refuses to Address Whether Lebron James Tweet Violated Terms of Service

LebBron James

Twitter is refusing to address whether a tweet by Los Angeles Lakers star LeBron James violated the platform’s terms of service.

James tweeted, then deleted, a picture Wednesday of Ohio police officer Nicholas Reardon who shot 16-year-old Ma’Khia Bryant as she attempted to stab another girl, body cam footage showed.

“YOU’RE NEXT,” James tweeted to his millions of followers with the hashtag #ACCOUNTABILITY. He has since deleted the tweet.

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USPS Monitoring Americans’ Social Media Accounts in ‘Covert’ Operation

The U.S. Postal Service’s law enforcement division is running a covert operation tracking and collecting Americans’ social media posts, Yahoo News reported.

The postal service’s Internet Covert Operations Program (iCOP) monitored social media accounts for “inflammatory” posts and protest plans, according to an internal document obtained by Yahoo News. The U.S. Postal Service (USPS) investigated Parler and Telegram accounts that referenced protests that were supposed to occur on March 20 for the so-called International Day of Protests, the document showed.

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‘Enemy of the People’: Minneapolis Star-Tribune Publishes Biographical Information of Derek Chauvin Trial Jurors

Juror tag on dress shirt

The Minneapolis Star-Tribune is being blasted online for releasing biographical information of all twelve jurors plus two alternates in the Derek Chauvin trial in the killing of George Floyd.

Without naming the jurors, reporters Paul Walsh and Hannah Sayle on Tuesday published enough details about their lives, internet sleuths and local snoops may be able to figure out who they are.

Walsh is a general assignment reporter at the Star-Tribune, and Sayle is a digital features editor. Online critics are accusing the paper of trying to intimidate the jurors into reaching a guilty verdict.

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DeSantis and Doctors Accuse Media, Big Tech of Hiding Harm from COVID Restrictions

Ron DeSantis

The media, academy and Big Tech are suppressing facts about the harms caused by COVID-19 lockdown policies, especially for younger generations, Gov. Ron DeSantis and public health experts said in a “roundtable discussion” on the novel coronavirus Monday.

These powerful American institutions are also misleading their audiences about the public health results from Florida’s open approach, which contrasted sharply with most states, they said.

The potential Republican presidential candidate hammered Google and its YouTube platform in particular for removing his earlier COVID-19 roundtable with the same doctors, branding it “misinformation.” Even some Florida news stations had their coverage removed.

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Social Media Doesn’t Allow Posts That Break COVID-19 Narratives, Even Though Health Organizations Keep Backtracking Previous Findings

Social media companies have policed coronavirus-related content based on information from top health organizations, even as those organizations have contradicted themselves.

Facebook and Google instituted policies early in the pandemic restricting user content shared on their platforms to information that doesn’t contradict World Health Organization (WHO) and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) findings. However, the organizations have contradicted, backtracked or retracted their own findings throughout the pandemic.

Facebook’s policy states that the site “will debunk common myths that have been identified by the World Health Organization.” Shortly after coronavirus was declared a pandemic, Facebook announced its “Coronavirus Information Center,” which curates updates from “organizations such as the World Health Organization.”

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Top House Democrat Calls on FBI to Investigate Parler’s Financing, Possible Ties to Russia

Rep. Carolyn Maloney, the Democratic chairwoman of the House Oversight and Reform Committee, on Thursday called on FBI Director Christopher Wray to investigate financing for Parler, including whether the social media site has any ties to Russia.

Part of Maloney’s rationale for investigating Parler’s links to Russia is that the social media site’s CEO, John Matze, founded the company shortly after traveling to Russia with his wife, who is Russian.

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Commentary: The Purge Has Begun, But Nobody Knows When It Stops

In the weeks since the November presidential election, numerous liberals, leftists, and other opponents of President Donald Trump have called for a purge of him and his supporters from public life.

Just days ahead of the inauguration of President-elect Joe Biden on Jan. 20, those purges have begun in earnest.

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Commentary: The Mainstream Media and Social Media Oligarchs Are to Blame for the D.C. Rioting

The Mainstream Media Are to blame for the D.C. rioting. Through four years they relentlessly pursued a single-minded goal: to take down the fairly-and-squarely democratically elected presidency of Donald Trump. Towards that end, they escalated non-stories into major “news” and elevated non-entities into major public figures. As they did in 2014 with the tragic crash of Malaysian Airlines Flight MH17, they contorted serious news into theater and abandoned their duties to investigate honestly and report dispassionately, fairly, and responsibly.

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Star News Network Working to Restore Tens of Thousands of Posts Deleted from Facebook

Tens of thousands of posts containing news stories from The Star News Network’s Facebook pages were temporarily deleted Wednesday. 

“Hi, we are currently experiencing an issue with Facebook and because of that the sharing is stopped and your Facebook accounts are paused,” a third party software used by The Star News Network to schedule and post stories to social media said by email.

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Commentary: How to Parler

Are you tired of Big Tech deciding what posts you see on social media? Do you feel anxious posting your political opinions online? Do you wish you could exercise your right to free speech without worrying about political correctness or being “cancelled”?

If you answered yes to any of these questions, Parler may be the best thing to happen to you in 2020! It’s been a year, we all need some good news, so please read on.

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Conservative Facebook Users Upset Over Censorship Take Alternative Social Media Site Parler Out for a Test Drive

Facebook seems to be presenting a “Catch-22” for conservatives who are fed up with censorship: In order to leave Facebook yet let contacts know how to find them, they must risk Facebook’s censorship to let those contacts know.

Project Veritas has often documented Facebook’s bias against conservatives and its deletions of their posts.

Some who say they are tired of that bias are trying microblogging/social networking site Parler. They say they see Parler as a free-speech alternative to Twitter. Forbes in June ran an interview with Parler founder John Matze and how the site has grown to be a conservative presence in only two years.

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Commentary: Silicon Valley Titans Lie Again as Congress Meekly Looks On

After a series of mishaps involving muted senators, virtual cross-talk, and “connectivity issues” befuddling one of the world’s most tech-savvy men, the CEOs of Facebook, Twitter, and Google appeared before the Senate Commerce Committee on Wednesday for what has now become a performative ritual: senators of both parties yell about different aspects of social media, the tech giants respond with bland, vague, noncommittal statements. And nothing substantive happens.

This is exactly where the Senate Commerce Committee found itself on Wednesday, when Big Tech was confronted with a host of critics and without any defenders—but ultimately very little in the way of committed follow-up from legislators.

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State Department Monitored 13 Americans’ Social Media in Possible Legal Violation

Officials at the U.S. embassy in Kiev ordered the monitoring of 13 prominent Americans’ social media accounts during the early days of the Ukraine scandal in spring 2019 and later were informed their activities potentially violated the Privacy Act, according to State Department memos made public on Tuesday.

The memos, released under a Freedom of Information Act lawsuit brought by the conservative watchdog Judicial Watch, show those targeted for monitoring included President Trump’s eldest son, Don Jr., the president’s personal lawyer and former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani, and Fox News personalities Sean Hannity, Laura Ingraham and Lou Dobbs. This reporter was one of the 13 individuals on the list targeted.

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Twitter ‘Embarrassed’ as Hack Hits 130 Accounts

Twitter says the hack that compromised the accounts of some of its most high-profile users targeted 130 people. The hackers were able to reset the passwords of 45 of those accounts.

The San Francisco-based company said in a blog post Saturday that for up to eight of these accounts the attackers also downloaded the account’s information through the “Your Twitter Data” tool. None of the eight were verified accounts, Twitter said, adding that it is contacting the owners of the affected accounts.

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Reddit Bans Pro-Trump Group in Latest Attack on Conservative Speech

Reddit, one of the top internet sites in the world, on Monday banned a major pro-President Donald Trump group that had about 800,000 members, citing “hate speech.”

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Ads for Children’s Book on 19th Amendment Written by Sen. Blackburn and Her Daughter Banned by Instagram

Instagram reportedly believes a children’s book written by U.S. Sen. Marsha Blackburn (R-TN) and her daughter, about the history of the 19th Amendment, may “influence the outcome of an election,” so the tech giant has banned advertising for it.

The Federalist reported on the book’s ban.

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Facebook Offers $100K for Developers Who Create AI to Police ‘Hateful Memes’

Facebook is working to set up an AI meme police.

The social media behemoth said it is creating a contest with a $100,000 prize to encourage developers to create artificial intelligence that can “identify multimodal hate speech.”

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Facebook Provides $16M in Grants to 200 Mostly Liberal Local Newsrooms

Facebook last week announced that more than 200 news organizations will receive nearly $16 million in grants through the Facebook Journalism Project’s relief fund for local news. These grants come from $25 million in relief funding announced in March from Facebook’s $100 million global investment in news. It includes:

$10.3 million being awarded to 144 US local newsrooms as part of the COVID-19 Local News Relief Fund Grant Program. The fund is supporting many publishers who are hardest hit by this crisis: nearly 80 percent of recipients are family- or independently owned and more than half are published by or for communities of color.

$5.4 million being awarded to 59 North American newsrooms that participated in Facebook Local News Accelerator programs focused on subscriptions and memberships.

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State Rep. Vitale’s Facebook Campaign Account is Alive and Well, Despite Reports to the Contrary

State Rep. Nino Vitale (R-Urbana) says reports of his Facebook campaign page’s demise are greatly exaggerated — it was down temporarily, but the social media giant was very cooperative in restoring it.

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The Battleground State Report Talks About How Twitter Has Become the ‘Sewer of Left Wing Attack Dogs’

On Friday’s Battleground State Report with Michael Patrick Leahy and Doug Kellett – a one-hour radio show from Star News Digital Media in the early stages of national weekend syndication rollout – Leahy and Kellett discussed the mental state of the nation and how people have either succumbed to the age of unreason or outrage. Leahy did, however, give kudos to the concept of social media as it helped launch the Tea Party movement in 2009.

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Live Action Founder Lila Rose Says Facebook Censored Them with Biased Fact Checkers, Says ‘We Were Targeted’

Live Action founder and President Lila Rose said Facebook allowed abortionists to fact check Live Action content and label it as misinformation.

Facebook cited a fact check from two third-party fact checkers, telling Rose and Live Action that their statement “abortion is never medically necessary” was both inaccurate and misleading.

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Brutal Social Media Response to Mueller’s Stumbling Congressional Testimony

by Audrey Conklin   Democrats, journalists and celebrities responded to former special counsel Robert Mueller’s testimony Wednesday, with some noting he appeared to be “struggling,” “frail” and not “as sharp” as years past. Mueller appeared before lawmakers on two House committees to testify about the report investigating potential Russian interference…

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Commentary: Reddit Bans Largest Trump Subreddit as Trump Announces Social media Summit to Address Censorship

by Robert Romano   In the latest round of social media censorship, Reddit has quarantined the largest subreddit in favor of President Donald Trump, r/The_Donald, with over 750,000 followers, restricting access. The move comes amid a crackdown of conservative content on social media platforms, with users on Facebook, Twitter and…

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US Requires Social Media Details on Most Visa Applications

  The State Department is now requiring nearly all applicants for U.S. visas to submit their social media usernames, previous email addresses and phone numbers. It’s a vast expansion of the Trump administration’s enhanced screening of potential immigrants and visitors. In a move that’s just taken effect after approval of…

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Trump 2020 Advisory Board Member Censored on Facebook and She Says It’s No ‘Algorithm Fluke’

by Mary Margaret Olohan   Facebook blocked Trump 2020 campaign advisory board member Jenna Ellis Rives from sharing a screenshot of a tweet by citing “hate speech,” but Rives believes this is a part of a deliberate attempt to censor conservative commentary until it is no longer timely. Rives took…

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Commentary: The Tyranny John Stuart Mill Warned About Is Taking Root on Social Media

by Robert Romano   In John Stuart Mill’s magnum opus, On Liberty, which provides one of the most compelling defenses of free speech in human history, the philosopher warned how a tyranny of the majority could impose censorship that would be “more formidable” than even governmental censorship and that it could “enslav[e]…

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LinkedIn Co-Founder Reid Hoffman Played a Role in Creating Fake News Software, Nonprofit Confirms

by Chris White   The liberal billionaire who allegedly backed a misinformation campaign during the midterm elections played a significant role in funding a group responsible for creating a controversial fake news project. Reid Hoffman greatly increased his financial contributions to artificial intelligence research group OpenAI, The Daily Caller News…

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Commentary: Healthcare Will Follow the Dangerous Politicization of Big Tech

by Tho Bishop   As tech executives continue to be grilled in front of Congress, the growing Bernie Sanders-wing of the Democratic Party is preparing to push its misnamed “Medicare for All” into the political mainstream after its political gains in the midterms. While these two stories seem to have…

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New Documentary Shows Viewers the Power of Tech Giants

by Ryan McMaken   The Creepy Line, a new documentary by director M.A. Taylor, is now streaming at Amazon Prime. It provides an interesting and revealing look at how Google and Facebook influence their users’ view of the world, and how the users we often presume to be the customers…

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Commentary: Merry Christmas – We’re All Gonna Die (Again)!

by Thaddeaus G. McCotter   One of the less salubrious effects of the anti-social network is how everything and anything is deemed the end of the world and, logically, the end of humanity. True, to the Regressives, the end of humanity does not mean the end of the world but,…

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Commentary: Fighting Democrats Dirty Politics

by Karin McQuillan   The midterms are in the rearview mirror and the chattering classes are back to debating fake collusion with Russia and a looming indictment of the president. Before the midterms, Republican voters were told this election was consequential. After the midterms, we’re told it is just one…

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Taylor Swift Named ‘Most Influential’ Person on Twitter in 2018

Taylor Swift is the most influential person on Twitter this year, despite only tweeting 13 times, CNET says. Social media analysis company Brandwatch released on Wednesday its annual lists of the top 10 most influential women and top 10 men on Twitter. With an “influencer score” of 98 points out of a possible…

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Twitter Bans Misgendering Trans People but Allows Porn

by Grace Carr   Twitter banned the use of biological pronouns to refer to transgender persons, adding a clause prohibiting the practice to its policy regarding hateful conduct. The social media platform updated its policies on hateful conduct in October, but the move wasn’t largely noticed until Friday and Saturday…

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Commentary: Tech Giants Didn’t Deserve Public Trust in the First Place

by Zachary Loeb   Amazon may have been expecting lots of public attention when it announced where it would establish its new headquarters – but like many technology companies recently, it probably didn’t anticipate how negative the response would be. In Amazon’s chosen territories of New York and Virginia, local…

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Victor Davis Hanson Commentary: The Progressive Synopticon

by Victor Davis Hanson   In the post-election aftermath, Republicans are wondering about how they can capture that missing 2-5 percent of the electorate that lost them the House of Representatives. Could they pry away 40 percent of the institutionalized Democratic Latino vote on delivery of a full-employment economy of…

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Democrats Have Used Social Media and Paid Protesters to Create the Illusion of a Majority, Says Dan Bongino

by Nick Givas   Political commentator and former secret service agent Dan Bongino accused Democrats of manipulating social media and paying protesters to create the illusion they’re in the majority. “Listen, the left has gotten really good at this,” Bongino said on “Fox & Friends” Monday. "The left…gives the impression that they…

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Analysis: California’s Bill Establishing the ‘Internet Social Media Advisory Group’ Could Run Afoul of the First Amendment

California is one step away from going down the unconstitutional road of government-mandated censorship of Internet speech. The California Senate and State Assembly recently passed S.B. 1424, the “Internet: social media: advisory group” act. This fake news advisory act is now on the desk of Governor Jerry Brown for his signature. According…

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Facebook Flags, Censors NPR Report on Inflated Government School Shooting Statistics

handcuff keyboard

by John Miltimore   Earlier this week, NPR reported on the high number of school shootings alleged by the U.S. Department of Education. The 240 school shootings detailed in the department’s report on the 2015-2016 school year was significantly higher than other estimates. So NPR, with the assistance of the non-profit group Child…

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