Before the presidential election in 2024, Republicans need to put pressure on Big Tech and social media corporations to ensure that free expression is protected.
Twitter has stated its plans to "protect" political dialogue in advance of the approaching midterm elections in the United States by confirming its commitment to its "Civic Integrity Policy" in a blog post that was published not too long ago.
It is almost guaranteed that this regulation will only be employed for the purpose of censoring those who hold right-wing beliefs because Silicon Valley has a history of silencing conservative voices while giving a boost to left-wing causes. And considering how hard it would be to introduce laws before the midterm elections in 2022, the Republican Party really needs to make the regulation of big tech a top priority in order to protect the legitimacy of the presidential election that will take place in 2024.
According to Twitter, its Civic Integrity Policy covers the most prevalent types of detrimental misleading information regarding elections and civic events. This is accomplished by flagging "misleading content" and, in certain situations, overtly suppressing content that makes "false or misleading claim[s]." On the other hand, if we use recent events as a point of reference, we can observe that Twitter does not honestly implement this guideline.
Twitter censored conversations about Hunter Biden's laptop in the year 2020, just a few short weeks before the presidential election. The company went as far as to stop people from sharing the New York Post story that exposed the scandal with one another, asserting that its circulation violated the company's policy on attempting to spread information obtained via hacking. In other words, the company went to great lengths to prevent users from sharing the story. Twitter did nothing to halt the dissemination of confidential copies of Donald Trump's tax papers, which is an interesting coincidence.
Why should we care about this?
Twitter justified its silencing of speech that favours a Republican incumbent by falsely demarcating it as ill-begotten misinformation. At the same time, Twitter did nothing at all to clamp down on the likely obtained illegally information that damaged the reputation of the same incumbent among the electorate.
Eighty two percent of Biden voters in seven battleground states were uninformed of all of the scandals that were associated with him, and it just so happens that Big Tech may have given him the election by stifling unfavorable stories about Joe Biden. 17 percent of these voters stated that if they had been aware of these controversies prior to voting, it would have influenced them to vote differently.
The integrity policy of the corporation was applied in a way that singled out and especially targeted communication that was supportive of the Republican Party. Twitter's decision to suppress this speech played a vital part in Joe Biden becoming the Vice President of the United States.
The utility of social media may essentially be summed up as the creation of a digital town square in which individuals can exchange information with one another. Therefore, from a moral standpoint, organizations that seek to profit from the user data they get from speech-focused platforms ought not to guarantee free speech.
But more crucially, given the frequency with which large tech platforms like Twitter behave on behalf of the government, such companies need to be held responsible for infringing upon the rights guaranteed by the First Amendment to users in the United States. It is necessary to require corporations that serve in a capacity similar to that of the government to preserve constitutional rights afforded to people of the United States.
Former White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki made it clear in a briefing held in July 2021 that the administration of President Joe Biden intended to work together with Big Tech in order to monitor misinformation more closely and proactively address the public's questions without unknowingly giving a platform to health misleading information that can harm their audiences. Moreover, she admitted that the White House planned to suppress anti-regime propaganda by bringing individuals and organizations together to combat misinformation.
Social media corporations deplatformed journalists who asked tough questions regarding Biden's Covid plan and the efficacy of the Covid vaccine after the White House successfully convinced Big Tech to crack down on narratives opposing its own.
It is imperative that government employees be held accountable to the Constitution of the United States and that they be prohibited from violating the rights of private persons. In addition, in spite of what the executives of digital corporations may claim when they testify in front of Congress, these businesses are driven by political ideology and work to advance the goals of the political left. Is there any room for doubt regarding the likelihood that big tech would organize another campaign in support of Democrats in 2024?
Before the midterm elections in 2022, it is not only far too late for Republican members of Congress to submit regulatory legislation that would bring in social media sites like Twitter, but it is also politically impossible for them to do so. In light of this, the Republican Party will need to take action as soon as it retakes control of both the House of Representatives and the Senate in order to protect free expression online in time for the 2024 presidential election.
The preceding is a summary of an article that originally appeared on The Federalist.