It sounds like something out of 1984 by George Orwell
Yet, that’s exactly what a CNN reporter implied when they said that social media sites like ‘Parler’ are a “Threat to Democracy.”
Cable news channels, social media platforms, video sites, and search engines aren’t just about providing information anymore. They’re about hiding information. It’s their new responsibility.
It makes perfect sense. Big Tech is only doing what’s best for us. If they weren’t, think of all the lies that we would believe. Think of how that would affect our country and the world. After all, most of us lack a modicum of common sense or the ability to do our own research. We should really be thankful for any large corporation that does that work for us. It gives us extra time to sit back and catch up on our Netflix.
In a way, they are pretty much modern-day heroes!
Honest Fact-Checking is Impossible
The real problem is that even if you’re someone that agrees with the censorship. That somehow they are only hiding false information. You have to realize that it is a slippery slope at the very least. There is no such thing as zero bias. Everyone is biased. What is considered scientific consensus today could also change tomorrow. It’s no one’s job to step in the fray and make themselves the arbiter of truth. It’s an impossible task. Even if you gave that job to the most unbiased people possible, there would be censorship of ideas that they don’t consider true. So where does it end?
Absolute Power Corrupts Absolutely
Some old white guy named Lord Acton once said, “Absolute power corrupts absolutely.” It means that if you give someone unlimited power, then it will always be abused. Give someone too much, and they will believe they are untouchable and become more and more egregious with their abuse of power. The friendliest, most pleasant person will turn into a dictator because power is addictive. That’s what we see happening with some of these large social media monopolies.
How Did We Get Here?
Ultimately, it’s all about faith in people. That’s what the big Tech companies lost when Donald Trump won in 2016. Feeling like their enemy used them, they started to clamp down harder on what they considered misinformation (they could never let that mistake happen again). With the Coronavirus and the 2020 presidential campaign, it only magnified that effort a 100 times over.
The First Amendment now gets trampled daily. If we do nothing about it and ignore it, then there is no doubt that we will lose it. We will leave our children a world in which what you say is controlled by a select few. A world in which our most fundamental right has an asterisk next to it.
But It’s Not Over, Yet
I like to think that this will all work out, that maybe our government will fix it, but I’m not going to bet on that. It’s a problem too big to leave up to others. If we want to fix this problem, we have to make a small sacrifice and remove ourselves from these big monopolies until they start to feel the pain and correct it themselves.
So do we just remove ourselves from social media altogether? No. There are other alternatives available like Parler and MeWe, that don’t stifle some of our most basic rights. Many have already made the migration to these new platforms, and that’s where you will find me.
Wait, wasn’t Parler Invented by Satan?
Now I know what the news media says about these sights. They’re dangerous, rife with misinformation, and full of horrible, racist, homophobic people. It’s a narrative they like to push to shame anyone brave enough to take a stand against these large tech monopolies.
I hope you don’t believe that is the character of the people there. Will you find some anger there? Yes! But no more than what you see on any of the other sites. Ultimately, what others think about you or me shouldn’t even matter. They can say whatever they want. We can’t allow intimidation to stop us from standing up for our freedom of speech or else we will lose it.
If you’re ready to take the plunge, you can find me on Parler (@jimwriteswords) or MeWe (Jim Miesner).
I hope to see you over there!