Twitter censors Trump, but passes the Chinese Communist Party’s disinformation

Twitter moves extremely quickly and easily to ban or tag President Donald Trump's tweets. In recent weeks, the social media founded and led by Jack Dorsey has implemented an unprecedented effort to obscure as much as possible the legal battle of the Trump team aimed at demonstrating the irregularity of the presidential elections. By marking, within minutes, tweets from the president and anyone else regarding election fraud as containing false or controversial information; suspending dozens of accounts, including those of witnesses immediately after their hearings in the legislative assemblies of the states involved; preventing the circulation of links to sites and documents, for example the complaints presented by the president's lawyers in court. All with extreme rapidity and unscrupulousness.

Incidentally, suppressing any attempt by Trump to challenge the regularity of the elections was a strategy widely announced by both Twitter and Facebook long before election day on November 3.

Even the traditional media have refused to give adequate coverage to the complaints, brandishing them a priori as "unfounded". The "unfounded" accusations of the Trump team, we read in the strips of the big TV networks (the same ones that censored a press conference of the president), in the few press articles and even in the launches of the agency. Whether or not the president's lawyers are able to prove systemic fraud, and whether or not they are of such a size as to overturn the outcome, the anomalies in the November 3 vote, and the reports of irregularities, are so numerous and so varied that they deserve certainly an in-depth analysis – at least this we believed was the role of the media, old and new .

As Stefano Magni masterfully explained in Atlantico Quotidiano , social networks , from opportunities to express oneself freely, have become the new censors and, in fact, politicized information organs – obviously left-wing, like all mainstream media. But how was this possible?

They have certainly bowed to a real campaign orchestrated by the political left and the traditional US media, which induced them to change their policies and their algorithms. Not with the police and state censorship, but with the crossfire of screaming squares, organized boycotts and social stigma.

But it is also true that the same leaders of Twitter and Facebook have been happy to support these pressures. On the other hand, as is well known, the progressive ideology is dominant in Silicon Valley: from the CEOs to the last of the programmers, passing through the communication managers, they are all left-wing and someone in the forefront can even boast experiences in the staff of Joe Biden and Kamala Harris.

It all happens, coincidentally, after Trump's victory in 2016. Since then the psychosis of fake news , Russian propaganda and big data ("innovation", until Obama was using them in 2012) was born. So Twitter and Facebook went on trial. And having convinced themselves that they had contributed significantly to Trump's victory, they decided that they had to atone for their guilt. The intent was very clear: to force them to align themselves with the political standards of a liberal media, at the cost of going against users. And they folded, agreeing to select the news and organize its hierarchy, and even decide the coverage, positive or negative, to give to presidential candidates. In short, what any publisher does.

There is a small problem, though: publishers are legally responsible for what they publish.

If Twitter is so zealous in flagging the tweets of Trump and his supporters as disinformation, suspending or limiting right-wing accounts, a gigantic question arises: what about fake or "controversial" tweets from other governments and state actors? Why does it pass without batting an eye the hate and violence incitement tweets of the Iranian leadership, as well as the brazen propaganda spread by the official accounts of the Chinese Communist Party?

The problem, at this point, is even trivial: since it does so with Trump and right-wing accounts, if Twitter doesn't label a tweet from a president, a head of government, or a public authority, as containing false information. or controversial, it is implicitly suggesting that that tweet is truthful, accurate. Even if it isn't. And it must be held responsible for the misinformation that through distraction (or something else?) Makes it pass.

Twitter staff have been careful not to counter Beijing's disinformation. Suffice it to mention the official accounts of the Chinese government, or in any case attributable to the CCP, which in recent months have deliberately spread disinformation on the origins of Covid-19 , claiming that it arrived in frozen foods from Europe and Italy.

As the US Spectator recalls, a tweet from the spokesman for the Chinese Foreign Ministry, Zhao Lijian, was among the trends, showing a retouched image of an Australian soldier with a knife around a child's neck. Marco Rubio, Republican Senator from Florida, wrote directly to CEO and founder Jack Dorsey asking for clarification. The point is exactly what we were pointing out: why is the US president's account under special surveillance, day and night, while Chinese state accounts are authorized to spread conspiracies and disinformation against other countries and the global pandemic that Beijing has caused?

In June 2019, Twitter had to apologize for removing the accounts of several Chinese dissidents, coincidentally three days before the 30th anniversary of the Tiananmen Square massacre. He spoke of a mistake. The same "mistake" that has been repeated for years towards conservative accounts.

We recall, among other things, that always Twitter , with an unprecedented decision, a few days before election day , censored the investigation of the New York Post (not a tabloid magazine, but the fourth US newspaper by circulation) on the links between business between the Biden family and China. Not content with labeling "controversial information" on the tweets relaunching the article, but blocking the content and suspending the newspaper's official account.

All this does not surprise us, unfortunately. Even if it is unfounded, and as far as one may disagree , to obscure President Trump's legal campaign, to have censored the NYPost journalistic inquiry into Biden, these are Chinese methods.

With regard to Trump, but not only, Twitter has assigned itself the role of arbiter of the "truth". But this role, admitted and not granted that it can be recognized, must correspond to responsibilities. He must legally answer for the "truths" he decides to pass …

The post Twitter censors Trump, but passes the Chinese Communist Party's disinformation appeared first on Atlantico Quotidiano .

This is a machine translation from Italian language of a post published on Atlantico Quotidiano at the URL on Thu, 03 Dec 2020 05:00:21 +0000.