David Sacks is one of the founders of PayPal, so he certainly understands the tech world. He sees significant similarities between the latest GameStop stock controversy and social media censorship.
The first involved hedge funds, which he refers to “as the apex predators of capitalism” who drive down companies and are “feasting on the carcasses.” The story is fairly simple. Various hedge funds “shorted” the stock of GameStop, and a group called WallStreetBets decided to damage those hedge funds by buying stock and thereby raised the price of the stock by 1,700 percent.
A digital distribution platform banned the WallStreetBets account for “hate speech” and for “spreading misinformation.” Sacks observed that the “quoted justification sounds familiar” because it was nearly identical to the justification given by Google, Apple, and Amazon for deplatforming Parler just a few weeks before. Also, WallStreetBets was locked out of their Robinhood online trading accounts.
Sacks has been warning about tech censorship ever since Parler was taken down and the sitting president was removed from all social media platforms. He asks why the platform chose to enforce its “Community Guidelines” at that particular time. Could it be due to the fact that the hedge fund ox was being gored? The platform may have warned WallStreetBets, but they could actually warn virtually every large message board on the Internet.
He reminds us that “censorship is about who has the power to censor, and what checks are placed upon that power. Right now, tech companies have all the power, and they exercise it as a like-minded cartel.” You know we have a problem when a tech insider is warning us about censorship. I am grateful he took the time to write about this danger.