A new bill has been proposed by Senator Josh Hawley which would limit the amount of time individuals could spend on social media platforms such as Twitter, Facebook, and Gab. The legislation is called the “SMART-Act”, or Social Media Addiction Reduction Act in which Hawley is pushing to fight back against big tech, the way individuals focus spend their time on social media, and how private businesses can design their products. Ah just what I need, the government telling me how I can spend my time online. That’s a real solution folks!
Given the fact that Big Tech censorship and free speech online are two of the most important topics of the 2020 election cycle, I wanted to write to all of the candidates to propose a censorship-proof solution to Big Tech bias. One that puts a political campaign 100% in control of their 2020 social media presence, not Silicon Valley.
Evan McMullin, the former CIA operations officer, Goldman Sachs investment banker, and failed Presidential candidate, has a PAC called Stand Up Republic which recently ran some free advertising for Gab and free speech on the internet. The ad refers to Republican Dan Bishop’s 2017 nominal investment of $500 in Gab in a crowdfunding campaign that was open to everyone and in which thousands of people participated.
The Founding Fathers regularly used pseudonyms in their published writings throughout the country’s birth. This allowed them not only to avoid retribution for speaking honestly but it also allowed them to focus on ideas rather than superficial issues of their personal life, status or state of residence.
Susan Wojcicki, the CEO of YouTube, sat down the The Guardian last week to pontificate about where the “line of free speech” is and how she is the right person to make that call. The great irony here is that Susan gets it. She knows she can’t outsmart the trolls. She knows she can’t fully police them. The more rules YouTube puts out, the more creators adapt and learn to walk right up to the line or on the line itself, maybe even testing what happens when they step over it.
TV is dying and the mainstream media isn’t far behind. We all know this inherently, but do we understand the effects of this steady decline into doom for traditional media consumption? Do we understand why censorship on the internet is getting worse?
According to reports the White House has a drafted an executive order to address social media censorship by targeting Section 230 of the CDA. If reporting on the current draft is correct then this is bad, very bad. It’s easy to get excited that action is finally being taken against the Silicon Valley oligarchs, but this isn’t the right solution. At all.