by Mitch Kokai
Senior Political Analyst, John Locke Foundation
Two tweets from President Trump have recently caused a stir across the tech world. Last Thursday, the president tweeted against Twitter’s shadow-banning of conservatives as a “discriminatory and illegal practice.” A week earlier, he praised Google as “one of our great companies” in response to the European Union’s five billion dollar antitrust fine against the search giant.
The president is correct that Twitter’s policies are discriminatory and illegal. …
… I welcome President Trump’s comments on Twitter, but am surprised he is giving Google a free pass. The search giant’s censorship and bias is every bit as severe as Twitter’s. And this bias is dangerous indeed, given Google’s dominance over the economy and the distribution of ideas on the Internet. In fact, Google has used its monopoly power in Android—the very issue with the E.U.’s fine — to stifle free speech in order to benefit Twitter and its new censorship policies. …
… It has demonetized and restricted YouTube videos from mainstream conservatives such as Dennis Prager’s Prager U on topics such as “Israel’s Legal Founding” and “Why Did America Fight the Korean War?”
Google partners with the Southern Poverty Law Center to help censor content on YouTube, as a “trusted flagger.” As the Daily Caller’s Peter Hasson reported, Google gives the far left organization “digital tools allowing them to mass flag content for review by YouTube personnel” and “guides to YouTube’s content monitors and engineers who design the algorithms policing the video platform.” YouTube recently removed videos from Alex Jones’ Infowars. While many of Jones conspiracy theories are “out there,” this sets a dangerous precedent for more viewpoint-based censorship.