Facebook can be a neutral platform with Section 230 protections, or it can be a private media outlet with partisan views, but it can’t be both.
“While I will intentionally not link to the New York Post, I want be clear that this story is eligible to be fact checked by Facebook’s third-party fact checking partners. In the meantime, we are reducing its distribution on our platform,” Andy Stone tweeted.
Stone is a former Democrat operative hired by Facebook as its Policy Communications Manager.
That comes after being doing press and communications for Democrats for over a decade.
After this tweet, Stone retreated into the corp speak “standard policy” jargon, but that’s nonsense.
1. It’s not standard policy for Facebook to throttle a story from a mainstream media outlet before it’s “fact checked” by the media. That’s an aggressively punitive measure.
A New York Times piece on Trump’s taxes, for example, or for that matter a Nation story accusing Trump of being a racist wouldn’t get that treatment, or even the fact checking.
2. Stone expresses personal disgust with the New York Post and the story. That’s a personal partisan take that’s clearly also corporate policy.
3. Big Tech’s monopoly power is a fundamental threat to freedom of speech and functions as blatant election interference. There’s no way forward to a free and open society when 80% of search is controlled by Google and 80% of social is controlled by Facebook. Stone was stupid enough to say the quiet part out loud, but there’s a culture of people like him rigging the game and manipulating public discourse with covert censorship. It must end.
Trump campaign press release
“Silicon Valley leftists are now openly bragging about interfering with the election to help Joe Biden and undermine President Trump by purposefully censoring journalism in a clear effort to rig the election,” said Hogan Gidley, Trump campaign national press secretary. “The social media giants and tech overlords have already declared themselves to be the sole arbiters of truth, and now they’re trying to prevent people from seeing important information that proves Joe Biden was lying to the American people and that he clearly knows about his son’s lucrative, corrupt business schemes in foreign countries. This is election interference, plain and simple.”