Big Tech is coming under fire for shutting down President Trump and a social media app popular with conservatives, along with an ongoing purge of other voices they've labeled as dangerous.
The social media platform Parler filed a lawsuit against Amazon on Monday after the company abruptly shut down its web-hosting services for Parler, effectively killing its online presence.
Parler had quickly become extremely popular, especially during ongoing controversy over online censorship, particularly at Twitter. Thousands of people had been moving to Parler, but Amazon claimed that users there were "inciting violence" after last week's riot on Capitol Hill.
The controversy is just the latest in the ongoing debate over free speech versus censorship online. Conservatives claim a big tech crackdown on free speech is taking place, and they point out that many others, including leftists and rogue regimes, post threats of violence on Twitter with no consequences.
CBN News is just one of many sites to report losing thousands of followers recently on Twitter. In the past few days, Twitter has reportedly deleted at least 70,000 users, accusing them of supporting conspiracy theories. They've even banned former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn and former Trump attorney Sidney Powell who both supported the president's quest to expose election fraud.
***As Big Tech censors media outlets they don’t like and shuts down various free speech platforms, be sure to sign up for CBN News emails and the CBN News app to ensure you keep receiving news from a Christian Perspective.***
Twitter began its purge on Friday by permanently suspending the president's account. Google and Apple then banned Parler – a Twitter competitor and growing social media haven for conservatives – so no one could use the Parler app anymore on their smartphones. Then Amazon web services completely took down Parler from the internet.
The claim is that Parler is partly responsible for the Capitol assault. The CEO maintains that's not true because his platform did not even have a way to coordinate an event.
Ken Blackwell of the Family Research Council said, "There's a real lack of consistency by those Big Tech companies. They allege to be neutral platforms for the free exchange of ideas, and that any regulation that they have will be evenly and fairly applied. Well, these are platforms that still allow for dictators and tyrants from other countries to communicate their messages freely."
For example, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo points to radical Islamic leaders in Iran who call for violence against the US and Israel, and they often do it on social media without repercussions.
Let’s talk Iran. The men in these photos threaten America and Israel nearly every day. pic.twitter.com/CROlrItsHk
— Secretary Pompeo (@SecPompeo) January 12, 2021
Former Homeland Security counterterrorism official Elizabeth Neumann says while Big Tech should be held accountable, the current situation calls for a different priority.
"Right now we need to make sure that we don't see another set of incidents like we had last week," she said. "Right now we need to calm the temperature and get people focused on what happened January 6. Let the investigation unfurl; arrest the people that violated the law, and then let's have a proper debate about Section 230."
But Media Research Center President Brent Bozell and other conservative leaders want Big Tech companies broken up after what they call "sweeping acts of censorship against conservatives and President Donald Trump."
Bozell added, "Big Tech has declared war on free speech and is now an existential threat to democracy."
Meanwhile, Democratic Sen. Mark Warner of Virginia calls the United States Capitol a crime scene. The likely chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee, has also requested that telecommunication and social media companies save any evidence associated with what he calls the "insurrectionist attack" in order to bring rioters to justice.
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