Houston, April 11, 2022. This is a response to a dear and sincere friend who believes Twitter, being a private company, has the right to censor whoever it wants based on its own rules; rules which you are “forced” to agree to when you sign up. It is a follow-up to a debate we have been having since I quit Twitter after they banned me for a second time.

The first time based on the simple denunciation by someone who didn’t like what I wrote (although it was factual), and the second time because of a tongue-in-cheek comment which algorithms and bots don’t understand but people do.

 

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Lèse majesté, the King of Communications Control

The French government is proposing two new laws to ban ‘Fake News’ from the web during elections and journalists and the opposition are in an uproar.  Those opposed to the laws say there is already legislation to protect candidates during campaigns and against libel. Those in the ruling En March Party, under fire from all sides, tried to clarify their position by making a distinction between ‘Fake News’ and ‘Fake Information.’

78591470-media-censorship-and-right-of-freedom-of-speech-concept-boot-with-text-censorship-and-pile-of-newspaSocial-media platforms are increasingly under attack for the content they carry and face heavy fines in some European countries. What is under question here is the legal responsibility of a platform for the content users post as well as how much freedom is to be given to speech. It is like a return to the XVth and XVIth century when the Church tried to control philosophy and science.