A new study from the Media Research Center says conservatives, and their ideas, right now are facing an existential threat from tech companies founded and run by liberals who have decided that only their voice should be heard on disputed issues.
“The conservative movement is facing a threat to its very existence – a new, insidious form of media censorship,” the MRC report, available starting Monday, said.
“Media bias has always been an enemy of the right. Liberal journalists relied on talking points and talking heads that agreed with for their stories. Conservatives were typically ignored or even targeted by old-school media monopolies but while conservatives were excluded, their organizations were still allowed to function and even flourish. The internet gave the right new tools to go around traditional media – websites, email, video and social media. Conservatives’ power online continued to grow as groups expanded their base of supporters and were even able to flourish online.
“Now, all of that is under threat,” the report states.
It’s not complicated. If the liberals who run the big companies, like Facebook, Google, Youtube and Twitter, all suppress conservative speech, and the report concludes they are, no messages that contradict leftist propaganda will be heard.
“Like it or not, social media is the communication form of the future – not just in the U.S., but worldwide. Just Facebook and Twitter combined reach 1.8 billion people. More than two-thirds of all Americans (68 percent) use Facebook. YouTube is pushing out TV as the most popular place to watch video. Google is the No. 1 search engine in both the U.S. And the world,” the study finds.
And those organizations are not about transparency and fairness.
“War is being declared on the conservative movement in this space and conservatives are losing – badly. If the right is silenced, billions of people will be cut off from conservative ideas and conservative media.
“It’s the new battleground of media bias. But it’s worse. That bias is not a war of ideas. It’s a war against ideas. It’s a clear effort to censor the conservative worldview from the public conversation,” the study said.
Among the key findings in the study is that Twitter leads in censorship – and Project Veritas even caught staffers boasting on hidden camera they had been censoring conservatives through a technique known as shadow banning.
There, users think their content is being seen widely, while Twitter deliberately suppresses it.
On Facebook, its trending feed has been caught hiding conservative topics.
A 2016 Gizmodo story warned of the bias, with testimonies from former employees they’d been instructed to “hide conservative content.”
“On the other hand,” the study said. “the term ‘black lives matter’ had also been placed into the trending section even though it was not actually trending.”
Google’s search functions, the study said, simply help Democrats.
“Google and Youtube’s corporate chairman Eric Schmidt is known to have helped Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign,” the study said. “The company’s search engine had deployed a similar bias in favor of Democrats.”
And YouTube simply shuts down conservatives’ videos. That deprives them of monetization first, but also the publicity that successful videos generate.
“YouTube moderators must take their cues from the rest of Google – from shutting down entire conservative channels ‘by mistake’ to removing videos that promote right-wing political views. YouTube’s special creators for change section is devoted to people using their ‘voices for social change’ and even highlights the work of a 9/11 truther.”
Further, tech companies partner with leftists including the Southern Poverty Law Center, and more, to try to further their campaigns.
It cites the SPLC and the Anti-Defamation League.
“Both claim to combat ‘hate,’ but treat standard conservative beliefs in faith and family as examples of that hatred. George Soros-funded Propublica is using information from both radical leftist organizations to attack conservative groups such as Jihad Watch and ACT for America, bullying Paypal and other services to shut down their funding sources.”
Twitter’s “Trust and Safety Councli” has 12 liberals as members. Only one conservative.
And the “fact-checkers” that the companies, whose empire encompasses $3 trillion, use? All “anti-conservative,” the report says.
A strong commitment to transparency and fairness with a dedication to free speech likely is the only solution, the study notes.
The companies “must stop pretending” that disagreeing is the equivalent of “hate speech,” and the bias must be removed.
That means groups that routinely label core conservative values as “hate” need to be addressed.
“Tech companies can’t expect conservatives to trust a system that is so blatantly one-sided,” it said.
Included in the study was a quote from Niall Ferguson, Hoover Institute senior fellow: “Nothing has changed politics not only in the U.S., but worldwide more than the advent of companies like Facebook. Forty-five percent of Americans now get news from Facebook …. Mark Zuckerberg, who runs Facebook, has the power to tweak the algorithm that determines what gets into your news feed and my news feed. And that is an awesome power … because let’s face it Mark Zuckerberg’s politics are liberal politics. He has no desire to see 2016 happen again.”
The study, by Ashley Rae Goldenberg and Dan Gainor, documents, “The problem starts deep inside the liberal corporate cultures of the companies. Eric Schmidt recently stepped down as head of both Google and Youtube. While still in that role, he aided the Hillary Clinton campaign. … Zuckerberg has been a strong proponent of the Dream Act and LGBT issues.”
Then their employees reflect those biases.
Facebook workers donated 99 times more to Hillary Clinton than President Trump. For Google, it was 63 times.
A survey showed 89 percent of very conservative, 74 percent of conservative and 69 percent of libertarian workers are “hesitant of being themselves while at work for fear they might lose their jobs.”
Sen. Ted Cruz, the study notes, warned just weeks ago that if the companies are a neutral public forum, they cannot allow censorship. If they are not a neutral public forum, “the entire predicate for immunity under CDA (Community Decency At) is claiming to be a neutral public forum, so you can’t have it both ways.’