Friday’s centre-pages op-ed of the Daily Telegraph and its World News section did not fail to grab my attention in view of my Newsflash: update on ‘whistleblowers’, as in one of Veronika West’s prophecy in its preceding post and in “giants will fall” – especially as an appropriate follow-on to my recent posts here and here on Facebook’s censorship (blocking my blog of John Barber’s Book of Daniel – his ‘badge of honour – Jonathan Ely’s post on Chinese whistle-blower virologist as well as Veronika West’s prayers for Trump).
‘HAVE you read the latest about Joe Biden, his son Hunter and the whiff of scandal? No, you probably haven’t, because the story has been whipped off social media faster than you can say “Left-wing conspiracy”.
‘No wonder there’s outrage. It took 16 years after founding Facebook for Mark Zuckerberg to decide that posts denying the Holocaust should be banned. But a Biden-bashing scoop gets zapped in seconds. Of course many are fulminating about the latest flagrant example of new media’s anti-conservative bias…’
Telegraph’s digital version
Nick Allen, the DT’s Washington correspondent, opens his report (emphases mine),
‘Facebook’s Sir Nick Clegg was involved in the controversial decision to reduce the social media distribution of a New York Post story which was based on the alleged emails of Joe Biden‘s son. [RB: when leader of the Liberal Democrat party Clegg was co-Prime Minister with David Cameron.]
‘The decision, which has caused uproar with less than three weeks to the US election, was lambasted as politically motivated censorship by senior Republicans, who accused Facebook of “acting as Joe Biden’s PR team”.
‘Facebook’s move was announced on Wednesday by its policy communications director, Andy Stone.
‘It is understood that the vast majority of decisions on content moderation at Facebook are made automatically by artificial intelligence or comparatively low-paid contract workers. However, a small number of cases, which are considered culturally, socially, or politically sensitive, are escalated through a chain of executives. They go through the vice-president of content policy, and the vice-president of global public policy, and then to Sir Nick, vice-president of global affairs and communications.
‘A tiny number of the most difficult cases then reach Mark Zuckerberg, the Facebook chief executive, and Sheryl Sandberg, the chief operating officer. Decisions about Donald Trump‘s posts, including the president’s claims that the coronavirus was less deadly than the flu, are taken at the highest level of the company, including by Sir Nick, Mr Zuckerberg and Ms Sandberg.
‘It is not known who would have taken the ultimate decision in either of the recent cases.
‘The Telegraph understands that even decisions about posts by Mr Trump no longer always require Mr Zuckerberg’s sign-off, because the company has now had enough experience at moderating the president. A spokesman for Facebook declined to say what part Sir Nick played in the decision.
‘The row over Facebook’s role came after the New York Post published details from Hunter Biden’s purported emails, including his business dealings in Ukraine and China, along with personal photographs that included one showing Hunter asleep with a crack pipe…
Nick Allen concludes,
‘The president (Trump) suggested repealing section 230, a law that protects social media companies from being sued over content posted on their platforms.
‘Announcing the action on the New York Post article, Mr Stone said: “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.”
‘Jack Dorsey, chief executive of Twitter, said his company’s handling of the situation had been “unacceptable”.
‘He said: “Our communication around our actions on the New York Post article was not great.”
‘Josh Hawley, a Republican senator, said he wanted Facebook and Twitter to answer questions in Congress over the controversy.
‘He said: “It’s basically Big Tech versus democracy. These tech companies want to control what we read. They want to control journalists in this country. They want to control the news and we just can’t let them.”
Telegraph’s broadsheet version
In this connection Alex Alexander highlights Fb’s global control of free expression:
“‘Emmanuel is with us’ That is a very important word to me as elections on now in NZ.
Facebook banned an entire political party called Advance NZ. Two days ago.
They have had to take out full page advertisements in newspapers. (Emphasis RB)
Praise the I AM.”
‘A Tennessee Catholic bishop asked Joe Biden on Sunday how he will account to God for his support of killing innocent unborn babies in abortions. Bishop Rick Stika of Knoxville, Tennessee has not been shy about criticizing the Democrat presidential candidate. Biden claims to be a devout Catholic, but he supports abortions without restriction and wants to force taxpayers to pay for them. He and his vice presidential running mate, Kamala Harris, are being described as the most pro-abortion presidential ticket in history.
‘On Sunday, Stika posed an open question to Biden on Twitter.
“At your judgment before God, how will you explain changing your position about abortion and how will you explain promoting no limits and allowing all protections removed protecting the most innocent?” the bishop asked. “Will you tell God you supported the ultimate child abuse because of the American Constitution?” click to continue reading