, 65 tweets, 28 min read Read on Twitter
Prediction: a huge class action lawsuit by influencers banned or demonetized by social networks will lead to recognizing & protecting:
- accounts as personal property
- posts as free speech

The more livelihoods depend on social influence, the likelier this becomes.
To be featured in this class action lawsuit:

Shadow banning

There are several legal precedents for this:
1) malls are regulated as public spaces and must protect speech and assembly rights even though they're private minnpost.com/cityscape/2015…
2) utilities (gas, water, electric) aren't allowed to cut people off even if they miss bills.
3) all kinds of laws protect consumers from landlords - from rent hikes to eviction
4) we have phone # portability between monopoly phone providers. (Telcos/cable have lots of regulation in general)
5) consumers are protected from bank defaults by gov't FDIC insurance
Taken together:
public right to assembly/speech (malls) + portability of followers/friends (telcos) + protection from eviction (utilities, landlords)

Create the beginnings of a regulatory framework for social utilities.

More on this: theamericanconservative.com/articles/exten…
If monopoly power of social networks is proven in court, "hate speech" and other reasons for banning users will get crushed in court.

The Supreme Court **unanimously** ruled that "hate speech" does not exist as a legal principle.

washingtonpost.com/news/volokh-co…
More on the mall issue. NJ's court set a precedent. nytimes.com/1994/12/21/nyr…
It bears repeating that if the de-facto means of communicating with your friends, family, colleagues, and fans (you've worked to acquire) are primarily accessible on a centralized platform, keeping you from those people effectively deprives you of #FreeSpeech.
The Supreme Court has wavered a few times on the subject, most recently favoring businesses. However, several states do offer varying levels of free speech protections in malls as de-facto town squares.
ccim.com/cire-magazine/…
Yes! The issue is not the agreeableness of the idea or the messenger, but the underlying principle. Freedom of speech isn't meant to be pleasant, merely free.

From @mtaibbi via @ggreenwald

"as was obvious during the Senate hearing w/Mark Zuckerberg..politicians are more interested in using than curtailing the power of these companies...platforms..will cave rather than be regulated..This is how authoritarian marriages begin..people should be very worried." @mtaibbi
If a buffoonish, sweaty, human cartoon has any kind of influence, my last concern is silencing the clown. My first is fixing whatever has could turn a shitty circus into a movement.
Who are we protecting exactly? If people are so soft-brained they can't discern crackpots from visionaries, they'll get radicalized by their blender or Starbucks cupholder.
As a society, we should err on the side of more voices, not fewer. Even a broken clock is right twice a day. For all their lunacy, fringe figures like Jones occasionally introduce valid people and ideas into the discourse. It's up to us to fish them out of the poop.
You think a shady, undemocratic, synchronized sniping will only silence those YOU disagree with? You're funny.

"Together, I know we can build a just society, where we all have the same opinion and are equally afraid to share it." - 'Intolerance We Trust'
ideafaktory.com/intolerance-we…
Interesting episode of @Radiolab on Facebook's "first amendment" for the world, aka its censorship policy.
pca.st/z1bF
@Radiolab Wondering if infrastructure companies are next in the free speech wars?

fortune.com/2018/08/17/inf…
"Everybody gets to speak." - @billmaher
@billmaher In the same article Senator Ron Wyden says social platforms are monopolies & he'll propose legislation to ensure they take down accounts that violate "common decency".

...exactly as written in the Constitution...

#FreeSpeech

recode.net/2018/8/22/1776…
@billmaher Good argument by @caitoz that in a country where government and corporate financial ties are melding, corporate censorship becomes state censorship.

steemit.com/censorship/@ca…
I take it all back!! Didn't mean you! Not like this. No one needs to free corporate speech this badly...

Good news: we can get you to the airport on time!
Bad news: Suge Knight is driving

thehill.com/policy/technol…
Nothing like regulatory "justice" laundered through ego and vanity.

businessinsider.com/donald-trump-s…
Some truth here. There is bad faith that amounts to a power struggle between leftism of platforms owners & righties demanding change.

But it's not about the algorithm, it's about re-defining what #freespeech means in the age of digital monopolies.

Wow am I sick of Alex Jones in my timeline...

That said, I'd like to control who does & doesn't appear there, not an Orwellian platform.

This is heading towards a landmark free speech case against private digital duo/monopolists.

nytimes.com/2018/09/07/bus…
Nothing screams legitimacy more than making something like this hyperpartisan...

This must be bipartisan to be taken seriously.

washingtonpost.com/technology/201…
What people in other countries sacrifice for the right to #FreeSpeech :
economist.com/open-future/20…
Couple imprisoned at 60 years old for political Facebook posts in Azerbaijan.

#FreeSpeech
Lost his legs in Tienanmen Square. Talks about China's government mind control.

#FreeSpeech
Girls in Afghanistan not allowed to speak publicly, but can on social media, but one was set on fire for questioning a mullah's opinion online.
#FreeSpeech
Google (and other digital platforms) are working hard to avoid the inevitable: the digital public square debate. It will happen. How and when is less clear.

businessinsider.com/google-ceo-sun…
"Alex, I'll take 'Wrong ways to do everything' for $1000."

California creeping dangerously into government-dictated "truth" online.

CA's Attorney General would "Draft a model strategic plan for Internet-based social media platforms to use to mitigate the spread of false information through their platforms."

fee.org/articles/calif…
Nice thoughts, but
1) No one wants to do the hard work of changing people's minds. Same as w/fixing families to solve crime, poverty & education

2) This isn't about solving problems. It's about political & corporate power & the useful idiots upholding it

thenextweb.com/contributors/2…
Funny the dopes who think they're winning are the ones handing their liberties away for some shallow political win. They get nothing, except inevitable schadenfreude, when it comes for them. It will.
Adding to my case for #freespeech on #socialmedia platforms:
If Twitter, Facebook, YouTube have any federal contracts (Google def does), they must comply w/federal laws, incl. 1st Amendment & be regulated by Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs.

en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Office_of…
Lee Camp congenially spreads as many crazy conspiracies as Alex Jones, BUT he's right about bans on alt news sites. Everyone should be able to speak freely. As w/MSM (also paid for political messages) critical thinking is ON US.

Bans don't enlighten the dim, they dull the bright
The UK, racing ahead of the US, by arresting people for offending others. Wow. The West is self-inflicting the collapse of liberalism.
This really is getting crazy.

reason.com/blog/2018/10/1…
Another great example of why consistency is impossible when your platform's content policies exist outside the bounds of free speech, in their own arbitrary, politicized, subjective, invented universe.

buzzfeednews.com/article/joseph…
Finely oiled freedom machine this is.
techcrunch.com/2018/10/26/ces…
While it seems like Gab's content is pretty dark (aside from this overtly violent fiend), this goes to show how easily the (financial) system can cut off all oxygen to speech. Strange because Facebook & Twitter hosted this guy too. They get to live.

theverge.com/2018/10/28/180…
THIS is what everyone feared would be a movement?!?! Seriously? Banning THIS is worth jeopardizing free expression?

Some (incumbent) platforms get to be wrong. Other platforms and individuals don't.
Is there truly an alliance forming on #freespeech and de-platforming? TBD

More on the pervasive power to silence people and ultimately, control them.

"your success depends on how well you align with the platform owner’s interests. The minute your interests diverge, your risk increases…"

- read "Surviving Platform Risk" ideafaktory.com/platform-risk-…

Applies to #freespeech & #startups alike.

Again, @caitoz nails it
Remember, corporations (not businesses) are govt creations, bestowed rights like personhood, monopoly, bankruptcy, tax breaks, etc. Some dominate, partly by buying politicians/policies. That often means corporate power = state power
medium.com/@caityjohnston…
@caitoz Good discussion between @RubinReport & @jordanbpeterson on the implications of financial platforms regulating speech.



#freespeech
@caitoz @RubinReport @jordanbpeterson Unlike the US, free speech is not typically protected across the EU. Political volatility ensures "hate speech" laws can & will fall in the wrong hands to stifle freedom. Short of inciting violence, speech is best regulated w/existing laws & social norms.

This will work unless regulated wallets/crypto exchanges get pressured by banks to disconnect controversial figures or they'll freeze their accounts, as Paypal/MasterCard allegedly did w/Patreon. With digital, there's no place to hide, including #crypto.

If this is true, it is frightening.
Access to #money, #payments & #financial #platforms cannot be dictated by private companies for any reason besides legal compliance. Especially, given rising consolidation across industries. This is a legit FTC issue.

As money goes digital, it's unsettling when its gatekeepers usurp regulators, no matter how unsavory their target.

Financial firms must follow laws, not draft them.

When your lifestyle or business is deemed unsavory & banks cut you off, send me M&M's.

flip.it/IBhpYY
As most industries drift towards monopoly, some companies attain the power to cut you off from essential goods & services.

Whatever your politics, lifestyle or activities - unless deemed illegal, no entity should have that kind of power.
@caitoz @RubinReport @jordanbpeterson It's unfortunate that we live in a time where free speech still needs remedial explanation & vehement defense.

Here's an essay that does both eloquently.

As far as I know, the US is the only nation that protects #FreeSpeech as a right. Canada (pronouns), UK (p0rn), Australia (video games), France (words) & rest of Europe do not. While private entities can ban anything, this ominous #trend is contagious.

Wondering when the lawsuits will start. Might be a case if they prove:
- monopoly power
- unfair business practices
- collusion (among networks)
- free speech infringement (contingent on establishing monopoly power)

Excellent conversation between @willchamberlain & @Timcast on the legal argument for enforcing free speech on monopoly social platforms.

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