Tag: alex jones free speech

Social Media Sites Don’t Have a Monopoly on Free Speech

Atilla Sulker | @AtillaSulker

Individuals from all corners of the political spectrum have been rilled up by the recent bannings of various figures from social media platforms including Alex Jones and Louis Farrakhan. Some have praised these bans for providing good restrictions on what they deem “fake news” or “hate speech”. Others have attacked these bans for being influenced by nefarious motives that are contra free speech. The debate regarding the extent to which social media sites may regulate speech has been going on for years now. Perhaps it is time for a reassessment.

Continue reading “Social Media Sites Don’t Have a Monopoly on Free Speech”

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Alex Jones and Infowars Permanently Banned from Twitter

By Francis Folz | United States

In a seemingly unprecedented move by Twitter, the social media giant has permanently disabled Alex Jones’ personal account. They also terminated the account of his media company, ‘Infowars’. Twitter claims they removed Jones and Infowars over “Tweets and videos… that violate our abusive behavior policy”

They did not specify which tweet(s) prompted such actions. However the tech firm did state that prior violations played a factor in the company’s ultimate decision. This ban also applies to Twitter’s video platform “Periscope”. 

Jones is not the only media figure that Twitter has removed. Recently, in fact, they terminated and suspended the accounts of far more moderate figures. This includes, but is not limited to, Scott Horton and the Ron Paul Institute.

According to CBS, a video cited pertaining to Alex’s ban displays Jones accosting CNN reporter Oliver Darcy during the congressional hearings that occurred on Capital Hill only one day prior. Many also speculated Jones’ heated discussion with Senator Marco Rubio could have prompted Twitter’s actions.

This is not the first time Jones has appeared in the crosshairs of Silicon Valley. Last month, YouTube (owned by Google), Apple, and Facebook removed their content from Jones and Infowars. They too indicated a violation of their user policies for rationale behind the decision. 

Twitter’s actions come on the heels of their CEO Jack Dorsey testifying before Congress on September 5th in regards to right-leaning censorship on their platform. Dorsey assured Congress that Twitter does not attempt to censor voices that express a conservative or non-mainstream opinion. Despite this, many feel that the decision to block Jones expresses a different reality.

After all, several tweets have indicated an openness towards harm against our current president. These, though, all fell short of Twitter’s abusive behavior policy standards. 

Unfortunately, actions and inactions like these only validate Jones’ conspiracies, whether Twitter, Facebook, and Google recognize it or not. Jones, who has critiqued the media frequently, may be quick to point out his belief in a double standard. If so, he will continue to fan the flames of anti-media thought among some Americans. As Twitter claims to be unbiased, though, it appears the censorship debate is just commencing.


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Twitter Suspends Scott Horton, Daniel McAdams, and Peter van Buren

By Kenneth Casey | United States

Recently, Twitter has suspended the accounts of three prominent libertarian voices. Scott Horton; editor of antiwar.com and managing director of the Libertarian Institute, Daniel McAdams; Executive Director of the Ron Paul Institute for Peace and Prosperity who often appears alongside Ron Paul on the Ron Paul Liberty Report, and Peter van Buren, a former foreign service officer who wrote a book critiquing America’s involvement in Iraq, all landed on the chopping block.

Horton, is one of the leading non-interventionist voices in the country. The author of Fool’s Errand: Time to End the War in Afghanistan, he stated he was suspended for calling Jonathan Katz a “boo hoo little bitch” for getting van Buren permanently banned from Twitter. The company apparently banned McAdams for retweeting Horton’s tweet at Katz.

In the aftermath of his account permanently shutting down, van Buren said in a letter that Twitter banned him for “exchanges with several mainstream journalists over their support for America’s wars and unwillingness to challenge the lies of government”. He then added “I lost my career at the State Department because I spoke out as a whistleblower against the Iraq War. I’ve now been silenced, again, for speaking out, this time by a corporation. I am living in the America I always feared.”

This all comes in the aftermath of the news of several media platforms removing Alex Jones. Spotify, Facebook, and YouTube all coordinated these to occur at the same time.

Although Twitter did not de-platform Jones and his company, the same logic applies. Three important advocates of a Foreign Policy of non-intervention and peace that goes against the establishment, mainstream narrative who happen to be vital figures to the libertarian movement now have their Twitter accounts suspended because of Twitter’s algorithms. Should we be silent about such a powerful company silencing these voices? Should we support their beliefs on right and wrong? Or instead, should we support letting its users decide that on their own with their own thoughts and beliefs?

While the threat may seem insignificant now, even private censorship of speech is often a slippery slope. The actions may trigger further removals in the future.


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