Media censorship: A vicious trend to gag independent media

The media censorship trend that accelerated with the multi-platform shutdown of Alex Jones in the summer of 2018 and his media operation INFOWARS has erupted into an unprecedented, full scale assault on First Amendment rights on the internet.

Barely getting attention, and certainly not stirring the outrage it deserves, Facebook has undertaken a massive purge of political, opinion-driven and alternative media accounts for “inauthentic behavior.”

Without warning, and scarcely any explanation, 800 pages were closed October 11 by Facebook for “working to mislead others about who they are, and what they are doing.”

Most of the pages “purged” by Facebook were independent media outlets that advocated for, among other things, different perspectives on the news of the day, pushed for marijuana legalization, chronicled cases of police brutality, advocated for independent political candidates, promoted a variety of social causes, railed against government spending and scores of similar accounts.

Facebook even went so far as to shutter 68 pages and 43 accounts linked to a marketing group promoting the presidential ambitions of Brazilian far right-wing presidential candidate Jair Bolsonaro, who eventually won.

The social media giant issued a statement saying it had acted against the pages and accounts linked to Raposos Fernandes Associates (RFA) “for violating our misrepresentation and spam policies.”

But Facebook shows no particular political leanings in its ongoing purge. Lean left or right, if you express unconventional viewpoints or contradict, challenge or circumvent the establishment, the plug could be pulled.

Facebook accounts such as Anti-Media, Reverb Press, reporters from RT, the Free Thought Project, Reasonable People Unite, Police the Police and similar pages, drawing hundreds of thousands of followers, are being shut down.

In explaining its actions, Facebook described the pages, with names like “Nation in Distress” and “Reverb Press,” as largely U.S.-based publishers who used clickbait headlines and other spam tactics to drive traffic to websites where they can tag users with targeted ads.

How that’s any different than major, established corporate media outlets worldwide is a mystery.


In the United States, which promotes the free speech myth while stifling real free speech (as evidenced by the recent overt censorship trends by the tech giants), just five mega-corporations monopolize over 90 percent of the broadcast media. They control the message and champion their own messengers.

Coming under fire earlier this year and in prior years for sharing user personal data to mega marketing firms, Facebook vowed to be more accountable and aggressive in weeding out “fake news” accounts, protecting personal data and ensuring users are adhering to Facebook’s vague, largely subjective rules for using the platform.

For example, Chief Operating Officer Sheryl Sandberg and Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey appeared before the Senate Intelligence Committee recently, determined, they said, to relentlessly smoke out the “bad actors” and “block them” from sharing any “undesired” content.

As Sandberg put it: “When we find content that violates our policies, we will take it down… This is an arms race, and that means we need to be ever more vigilant.”

What policies? Who makes these decisions? What about Freedom of Speech, the First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution?

And those “Intelligence” Committee Senators did not question or challenge the dictates of the Silicon Valley Lords.

They’ll leave it up to the senior-level geeks to arbitrarily, subjectively, and without any accountability decide what constitutes “good speech” and what is “bad speech.”

These senate hearings clearly demonstrated how these monopolistic tech giants are working hand-in-glove with government to restrict free speech, and censor anti-establishment voices.

And this isn’t an American issue, it is global.

The European Union, for example, is developing legislation that will force tech companies to censor “extremist” content. The law will require companies such as Google, Facebook, and Twitter to swiftly remove any content they consider inappropriate from their platforms. TJ


Censorship of independent media outlets is a dangerous, rapidly accelerating trend. With little explanation and no warning, sites that work to keep the establishment accountable, are themselves thwarted with no accountability at all.

We forecast that censorship of media will escalate throughout the “free” world. In many countries, especially in the Divided States of America, people tune into their favored sources that support their narrow agendas and fixed belief systems, ignoring alternative or multiple sources of information.

And while Google, Facebook and Twitter will dominate market share for the foreseeable future, market gaps are widening. There is a David vs. Goliath opportunity for creative, First Amendment-driven OnTrendpreneurs to create a populist revolution online that expands, doesn’t contract, free speech.

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