Buckminster Fuller, the eccentric architect, inventor and author, once opined, “You never change things by fighting the existing reality. To change things, build a new model that makes the existing model obsolete.” But Fuller, who died in 1983 at the age of 87, didn’t live long enough to see the advent of social media.
Fuller’s advice in general is valid, but as it relates to combating the undeniable left-wing bias of social media platforms, the call by some on the right to heed his suggestion and abandon Facebook and Twitter for Parler, MeWe, Rumble, or other, smaller upstart platforms is both a copout and a capitulation.
It shouldn’t be an either/or proposition. It’s possible to do both.
Case in point: Conservative talk-radio host Mark Levin has thundered, with good reason, about the discriminatory censorship of conservative posts on Facebook and Twitter, threatening to close his accounts and asking listeners to follow him to Parler.
During the recent presidential election campaign, the twin tech titans shamelessly suppressed conservative posts, if not by removing content altogether, then by labeling it as “disputed” (or worse) after questionable “fact checks.” Who are these anonymous “fact-checkers”? What are their methodologies for ascertaining the “facts”? What political agendas might these fact-checkers be bringing to the process? We simply don’t know.
The “fact checking” hit its credibility nadir when, on Nov. 17, Ben Shapiro’s Daily Wire posted the unarguably true statement “Stacey Abrams is not governor of Georgia,” trolling Twitter to see what would happen. (Democrat Abrams lost the 2018 governor’s race, but still refuses to concede.) Twitter flagged the post: “This claim is disputed.” (In bold type and with an exclamation mark, no less.)
The following day, on Nov. 18, Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey, called to testify before the Senate Judiciary Committee, conceded that Twitter had been “wrong” to censor mid-October reports by The New York Post on the dubious foreign business dealings of Hunter Biden, son of former Vice President Joe Biden, gleaned from what was found on Hunter Biden’s abandoned laptop computer.
But by then the damage had been done. By blocking anyone from tweeting a link to the article, and locking accounts that sought to share it, Twitter greatly curbed its circulation — and the problems the news could have caused the elder Biden’s campaign.
Twitter’s act of censorship also provided ideological cover for much of the legacy liberal media to downplay or outright ignore the story.
That the censorship has been entirely one-sided ideologically is underscored by the fact that there have been no comparable complaints from the left about their social media posts being deleted or branded as false or misleading.
Still, Mr. Levin shouldn’t make good on his threat to abandon Facebook by year’s end and migrate to Parler, which promises users they will be able to “speak freely and express [themselves] openly, without being ‘deplatformed’ for your views.”
By all means, join Parler and MeWe if you wish, but also stay and fight back on Facebook and Twitter, too. Abandoning them would only serve to surrender them entirely to the left. While Parler’s ranks have surged recently to 10 million users, Twitter has 330 million and Facebook has 2.7 billion.
Likewise, utilize Rumble as a video-streaming alternative to YouTube, and compare Google search results with those of rival browsers, such as Bing, Yahoo or Duck Duck Go.
Copyright © 2021 The Washington Times, LLC.