“Those who control story, control society.”-Plato
Social media has become the dominant form of communication. The average person spends 2.5 hours per day on social networks.
Since 2016, using the pretext of suppressing “misinformation,” Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and LinkedIn have silenced conservatives who express views in conflict with their views.
Reporting about this censorship is also labeled “misinformation” and dealt with by banning the user from their platform.
Two recent events are turning the tide away from liberal control of social media and giving conservatives a voice free from censorship.
Elon Musk Acquires Twitter
On April 25, Twitter accepted Elon Musk’s bid to take the company private. The takeover is the biggest acquisition in tech history by the world’s richest man.
Musk is a protege who, when 10 years old, developed an interest in computer programming and at age 12 sold a video game he had created to a magazine for $500.
In 1995, Musk and his brother founded a web software company which they sold in 1997 to Compaq for $307 million. Before the comapny became successful, Musk could not afford an apartment. He slept at the office and took showers at the YMCA.
In 1999, Musk co-founded an on-line financial services company which became Pay-Pal. Pay-Pal was acquired in 2002 by eBay for $1.5 billion.
In 2002, Musk started SpaceX to build affordable rockets.
Tesla accounts for about three quarters of Musk’s wealth. Musk did not start the company., He led a round of financing in 2004 and became the majority shareholder.
Tesla is the world’s best-selling electric car. In 2021, Tesla reached a market capitalization of $1 trillion, the sixth company to do so in U.S. history.
Musk has stated he plans to soften Twitter’s stance on content moderation. “Free speech is the bedrock of a functioning democracy, and Twitter is the digital town square where matters vital to the future of humanity are debated,” Musk said in a news release announcing the deal.
Republican lawmakers applauded Musk’s deal to take Twitter private. Many Democrats said the deal shows billionaires have too much power. Senator Elizabeth Warren (D – Mass.) tweeted “This deal is dangerous for our democracy.”
In the final days of his presidency, after the January 6 Capitol protest, Twitter shut down Trump’s account. At the time, Trump had 89 million followers. Twitter boasted that Trump was permanently banned from Twitter.
Facebook and Google’s YouTube followed suit and shut down Trump’s accounts.
Trump announced that he would launch a new social-media network called TRUTH Social. Trump said he would serve as chairman of the network whose mission would be to “create a rival to the liberal media consortium.”
The former president said, “Nowhere is censorship more dangerous and brazen than on social media, the public square of our times. We have seen renowned medical doctors banned from platforms for contradicting health authorities.”
On April 22, the founder and CEO of Rumble Chris Pavlovski, announced his company would be providing cloud infrastructure for TRUTH Social.
Rumble is the dominant cloud infrastructure for internet companies. Pavlovski referred to TRUTH Social as one of the fastest-growing social media companies on the internet.
Over 1 million of those wait-listed for TRUTH Social were immediatley added to the platform.
The First Amendment has no qualifier excluding “misinformation.” The Founders of America understood that all opinions and viewpoints are in need of protection.
Lon Safko, author of “The Social Media Bible” explained, “The original internet was based on the premise that if the viewer disagrees or is offended by the conversation, then it is their right to simply close the window and walk away. The social media platforms have a responsibility to allow those conversations to transpire.”
With the ascendancy of TRUTH Social and a restructured Twitter, content will not be restricted to what a handul of individuals with their own agendas decide is appropriate.
Photo by Capitol Geisha