Supreme Court Justice Thomas has noted that the Court will soon need to address freedom of speech issues in privately owned Big Social Media:
Recently, neuroscientist and philosopher Sam Harris came out in favor of Big Social Media censorship in a Triggernometry YouTube podcast. His comments, as reported in a partial transcript, supported acknowledged BSM efforts to stifle public awareness of of compromising material found on the laptop of Present Joe Biden’s son, Hunter Biden just prior to the U.S. 2020 election: “‘At that point, Hunter Biden literally could have had the corpses of children in his basement – I would not have cared,’ began the best selling author, who specialises in religion, rationality, and ethics…”
In the real world, the surest way to strengthen rumors about election fraud or other high-level misdeeds is to censor those who make the claim.
And here’s another underdiscussed fact: Book, video, and opinion banning creates many new jobs in censorship. Jobs in censorship, unlike those in arts, literature, and science, require literacy and submissiveness rather than creativity or good judgment. That greatly broadens the pool of qualified applicants.
As censorship grows, three things may be expected: 1) It broadens into areas in which it enjoys little public support. 2) It becomes indispensable to those who depend on it even as it stifles society. And 3) It is inevitably used by government to suppress knowledge of scandals, injustices, and high-level crime.News, “Atheist philosopher strongly supports online political censorship” at Mind Matters News (August 23, 2022)
Takehome: Ironically, most Big Social Media are domiciled in the United States to gain the freedom of speech that they increasingly deny to others.
You may also wish to read: Why misinformation comes from the top as well as the bottom. At Big Think, Cameron English asks us to look at the incentives for academic scientists to publish questionable research that gains widespread attention. When the incentive structure in science rewards clickbait claims, Establishment wars on “Misinformation” become a form of corruption. In the real world, there is no pristine source of Correct Information. Nor is there any reason to believe that those who insist that their motive is to prevent Misinformation are entirely motivated only by a sincere devotion to truth. Many may also be protecting an organization, philosophy, or private interest, whether or not they recognize the fact.