Executives from Facebook and Twitter testified on Capitol Hill two weeks ago. All the big tech companies deny they are engaged in any censorship, but the members of the Senate Judiciary subcommittee provided a number of examples.
The executive from Twitter stressed that his platform “does not use political viewpoints, perspective, or party affiliation” in making decisions about content or rankings. The other executive wanted to “state unequivocally that Facebook does not favor one political viewpoint over another, nor does Facebook suppress conservative speech.”
Senator Marsha Blackburn wanted to know why her pro-life ad was pulled during the 2018 campaign because Twitter deemed it “inflammatory.” It is worth noting that she did receive an apology from the executive who added that they made a “mistake on your ad.”
Senator Ted Cruz pointed to a Susan B. Anthony List ad that was banned. It had a picture of Mother Teresa with her quote: “Abortion is profoundly anti-woman.” At the top of the poster in the committee room was the word: CENSORED.
Chuck Konzelman is the writer and director of the movie “Unplanned.” He told his story of the obstacles he faced in marketing the movie through Google and Twitter. He did give credit to Facebook as the one social media platform where he didn’t have problems.
Senator Cruz also warned that anti-trust laws might eventually be used on the big tech companies if things don’t change. He noted that these big tech companies “are larger and more powerful than Standard Oil was when it was broken up” and “larger and more powerful than AT&T when it was broken up.”
Some Democratic members of the subcommittee believe charges of censorship are baseless but I don’t know how you could say that with all the examples that were cited.