You have to give it to Facebook: they are censoring posts left and right, and literally so.
Their latest victim: Russian TV’s (RT) Redfish. RT’s Berlin-based digital content project suffered the ignominy of Facebook killing their posts devoted to remembering the Nazi Holocaust and the defeat of fascism in Italy.
The project, Facebook said, violated its community standards. And, as a result, more than 830,000 followers ended up looking at the typical page, featuring a hand and words saying the page is no longer available.
Yes, some of the pictures were not for the squeamish: Italy’s Duce Benito Mussolini hanging upside down was executed on April 28, 1945 by Italian (very left-wing) partisans and hung down in that position for all to see.
The Redfish post that caused Facebook consternation was published on April 28, 2021, to commemorate the event.
On whose orders?
Facebook seems to be increasingly sensitive about facts. It removed archival photographs showing survivors of the Auschwitz death camp. Redfish published that content on Holocaust Memorial Day. The United Nations Organisation (UNO) designated January 27 — the anniversary of the liberation of the Auschwitz-Birkenau death camps – to remember the Nazi atrocities.
That’s when Redfish published its post, and that’s when Facebook removed it.
Why? Photos of death camp survivors violated Facebook’s rules on “nudity and sexual activity.”
There’s no sexual activity to be seen anywhere in those photos but yes, the survivors are really not dressed in three-piece suits. They are almost naked. One can feel from the pictures that they are shaking: famished, skeleton-like, and in January which just happens to be one of the coldest months on Northern Hemisphere.
Facebook has been claiming in all of its censorship attempts that its activities can’t be judged under the First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution.
Here’s what the First Amendment says (verbatim): Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.
So, it would seem that Facebook has a point.
Except, in a typical Facebook way of life (and American way of life, too), it has been pasting a warning label on everything linked to RT, however slightly. The warning label states, again, verbatim, that the company is funded in whole or in part by the Russian government.
Indeed, it seems that it is. But: so what? The truth is the truth no matter who utters it.
Yes, the Americans (and people elsewhere, following their example) have been telling all and sundry that coffee may be hot, or that shooting a gun may endanger somebody’s life, including yours.
But, RT says, and it has a pretty valid point here, if you follow Facebook’s decisions, they pretty closely resemble decisions made by U.S. government. It looks almost as if the so-called Big-Tech crowd were part of U.S. official propaganda.
RT uses another example: when they tried to post a colourised version of Soviet soldiers hoisting their country’s flag over the Reichstag (Nazi Germany’s parliament) in Berlin, Facebook removed it saying it broke its rules on depicting dangerous individuals and organizations.
This incident happened in May 2020, as most of the world were celebrating the 75th anniversary of the defeat of Nazism.
Facing this inexcusable blunder, Facebook claimed a glitch in its algorithm was the cause.
Whoever believes this statement must also believe in the tooth fairy and trust the claim that the Earth is round.
Uncomfortably many facts stand in the way. To explain itself, Facebook would have to clarify, for example, its close partnership with the Atlantic Council. This august body is part of North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO) effort to (their own words) identify “emerging threats and disinformation campaigns from around the world.”
To achieve this goal, the Atlantic Council obtained the services of one Ben Nimmo. This person is a self-described troll-hunter. Unfortunately, thus far, his findings have all had one major mistake: they were not supported by evidence.
While Russia definitely is NOT a shining example of pure democracy and law-abiding government, the German Commerzbank has yet to explain why it chose to close down RT’s video agency Ruptly and RT DE Productions GmbH’s accounts.
Just to make sure they would not be able to deny their actions were co-ordinated with Facebook’s, YouTube restricted RT’s ability to launch live broadcasts for seven days.
The explanation would have been hilarious if it wasn’t tragic: older videos, uploaded a long time ago, featuring an interview with a virologist and broadcasts from rallies against Covid-19 restrictions. According to YouTube, they violated its policies on “medical misinformation” and “spam, deceptive practices and scams.”
And here’s the craziest part: RT’s Redfish is now crying bitter tears. It describes itself as a left-wing (or left-leaning, at least) outlet, and now, it says, it is a victim of a right-wing conspiracy.
Not really true. The truth is much simpler: the so-called Big Tech are not only denying their users’ right of free expression. They are censoring the truth no matter whence it comes.
Where’s the anti-trust legislation when we need it?