Facebook Receives a Patent for Shadowbanning. Facebook Claims it doesn’t Shadowban.

James O’Keefe and Vice Media, ideologically right and left respectively, have reported for some time now that social media companies routinely suppress the content of certain users without their knowledge. It’s a practice known as shadowbanning and it has been used against Christians and social conservatives more frequently than any other group that participates in social media.

Fast forward to April of this year. Representatives of Facebook and Twitter were summoned to give testimony to a Senate committee. Texas senator Ted Cruz asked both if the companies employ the tactic. They lied and said they didn’t. The evidence for their prevarication comes from the US Patent and Trademark Office which just granted Facebook a patent for an automated system that would, “receive a list of proscribed content and block comments containing the proscribed content by reducing the distribution of those comments to other viewing users” while displaying “the blocked content to the commenting user such that the commenting user is not made aware that his or her comment was blocked.

Facebook originally filed for the patent on February 18th, 2015.

Of course, social media’s apologists will attempt to spin this matter by claiming that there is no proof that these companies have used the technology to censor certain speech. They’ll declare that just because a patent was filed to make the practice exclusive to Facebook, doesn’t mean that the tactic has been carried out. The question is: Why spend money to file a patent for the practice if they have no intention of using it?

Also, there’s plenty of proof they have employed shadowbanning. Twitter‘s own employees have admitted as much.

Putting aside the flimsy defense of those that wilfully ignore the truth, we must recognize the ramifications of such a development. Social media companies have built a reputation of being altruistic vehicles of socialization for civilization. In truth, they traffic in what is known as the attention economy – they gather a mass heap of people within a digital walled garden, secretly take users information and sell that information to the highest bidders. Hence, users see ads within their accounts based on what they type, speak, record, upload, are interested in and send via geolocation algorithms to the company’s servers. In essence, social media companies subdivide people and sell them to companies and other interested parties as cattle they can target for marketing purposes.

Stated differently, the users are the product – except when segments of that product report on the predatory practices of the social media companies and/or are ideologically opposed to the political inclinations of the heads of those companies. Then, they will proceed to silence those voices through various means, including shadowbanning. Alex Jones, Project Veritas, The Gateway Pundit, PragerU and others ring a bell? With this, another question arises.

What is to prevent Facebook and co. from receiving advertising dollars from certain users, only to turn around and give those advertisers the false impression that those paid-for-ads reached the targeted audiences when, in fact, they never ran the ads to begin with? Let’s call this, profiteering off of shadowbanning.

It’s more important that ever for the public to decentralize the reach and influence of these companies. No one elected them to regulate speech and yet they are acting like government bureaucrats.

It’s High Time to Switch Silicon Valley Off

I’ve given repeated consideration to chronicling social media’s pervasive and deleterious influence over hundreds of millions of people’s lives on this site. It’s a topic that has recently occupied a grand amount of personal mental space due to the ramifications of the public’s intimate relationship with the modern Internet behemoths. The most worrisome fact is that most are completely unaware of how the Zuckerberg’s, Dorsey’s, Cook’s, Pichai’s, Bezo’s and other Silicon Valley monopolistic plutocrats are employing Big Tech’s reach to manipulate human behavior and thought.

It was recently announced that YouTube (an Alphabet subsidiary, owner of Google), Facebook, Apple and Spotify all decided to ban Alex Jones’ (founder of InfoWars) content from their platforms. Collectively, their reasoning is extremely suspect, citing politically forked-tounge notions to justify the excommunication. Consider that Facebook stated that were prohibiting Jones from using the platform because he uses “dehumanizing language to describe people that are transgender, Muslims and immigrants”. Apple decided to desist from promulgating Jones’ podcasts because they are replete with “hate speech”. Continue reading

Podcast: Technology Giveth and Taketh Away

The Absolute Truth; Absolutely Podcast (this blog’s podcast,) is live. they’ll be available through this site and my page over at SoundCloud. (iTunes and Stitcher feeds will be made available shortly.

Here’s the description for today’s episode:

Individuals are reporting that they are more distracted, lonely, isolated and uninformed than in the past. This is ironic, considering that the advent of the Internet was supposed to bring about a new “Age of Reason” and interconnectivity. Could this all be a result of our ever-distancing act away from nature and nature’s God?

In this edition of the podcast, I talk about how people would suffer less in the so-called Information Age if they asked a crucial question every time they are sold an “emerging” technology: What does this technology ask that I sacrifice in order to use it?

Is Facebook a Force for Good in the World?

Don’t know if many readers have become aware of the dumpster fire started by former Facebook vice-president of user growth Chamath Palihapitiya. In an address given to pupils enrolled in the Stanford Graduate School of Business, Palihapitiya stated that he has felt “tremendous guilt” over the manner in which social media, Facebook included, is “ripping apart the social fabric of how society works”. (Relevant remarks begin around the 21:23 mark.) Continue reading

We Shouldn’t Let Technology Redefine Us

Plenty of conservative social critics have lamented the effect of Industrialization on Western society – specifically the manner in which people have allowed modern conveniences to overtake and replace our essential humanity. (This train of thought is thoroughly different from what Marxists have foolishly suggested, that Industrialization in and of itself was an evil occurrence, the effect of the free market.) Continue reading

5 Ways to Use Your Time Wisely

So teach us to number our days, that we may gain a heart of wisdom.Psalms 90:12

In an increasingly fragmented, delusional, illusory, disorderly and promiscuous era, it is important for the Biblical Christian to resist the secular tide and behave in a manner consistent with the true faith. This means acting and thinking in a manner that is contrary to the secular age. (Rom. 12:1-2)

This is a primary reason why I write about and criticize dangerous ideas that are popularized throughout the worldly culture. It is my hope that in doing so the reader will see the dogma for what it is and avoid it altogether, in keeping with the advice dispensed by Paul to the Thessalonians (1 Thess. 5:21-22):

“Test all things; hold fast what is good. Abstain from every form of evil.” Continue reading