Jesus said the meek shall inherit the earth. But today, could it be that the “geeks” of Silicon Valley are instead trying to inherit the earth?
Brent Bozell, head of the Media Research Center (MRC), just released a blockbuster report on the problem of censorship by big tech Silicon Valley companies, like YouTube, Twitter, Facebook, and Google. The report is called “CENSORED! How Online Media Companies Are Suppressing Conservative Speech.”
The MRC points out, “Like it or not, social media is the communication form of the future—not just in the U.S., but worldwide. Just Facebook and Twitter combined reach 1.8 billion people. More than two-thirds of all Americans (68 percent) use Facebook. YouTube is pushing out TV as the most popular place to watch video. Google is the No. 1 search engine in both the U.S. and the world.”
This is not just a war of ideas, observes the MRC: “It’s a war against ideas. It’s a clear effort to censor the conservative worldview from the public conversation.”
My first exposure to this censorship against Christian and conservative content online involves
David Kyle Foster, a former homosexual healed through Jesus. He makes high-quality testimonial videos of lives healed from sexual brokenness through Christ.
Foster said on my radio show, “We had been on Vimeo for almost nine years. We spent a lot of money establishing our presence there, and they didn’t complain about our content at all. In fact, our content is always respectful, kind, compassionate. It’s intended to bring healing to people who are looking for healing.”
But then, Vimeo pulled all 800 of Foster’s videos down one day. Foster says, “They invented this fiction that we were harassing homosexuals, we were demeaning to them—none of this is true.”
This type of suppression of conservative or Christian content in social media is happening a lot lately.
I spoke recently with political commentator Ben Shapiro for an upcoming D. James Kennedy Ministries television special on this whole issue.
Shapiro noted there’s a difference between a platform and a publisher. His outfit, DailyWire.com, is a publisher. They are responsible for the content they publish. In contrast, Facebook claims to be a neutral platform where others get to publish their own content. But in gearing their platform to suppress conservative content and promote liberal material, they are acting as a publisher, determining content, while claiming to be merely a platform.
Even Mark Zuckerberg, CEO of Facebook, testified before Congress last month: “I understand where that concern is coming from because Facebook and the tech industry are located in Silicon Valley, which is an extremely left-leaning place.”
Fighting such bias, conservative radio host Dennis Prager sued YouTube and their parent company, Google, last year for censoring his Prager University videos.
Someone might dismiss all of this with a shrug. “Who cares?” The problem is the extent to which these big tech firms are shaping the political, cultural, religious landscape. Not just in America, but around the world.
Recently, Adam Ford sold The Babylon Bee, a Christian satire website, citing his discomfort with these gatekeeper issues: “As a follower of Christ, I am primarily concerned with glorifying God, loving my neighbor, and spreading the gospel…I think the centralization of the internet is one of the greatest threats to the spread of the gospel, and the well-being of mankind, that we face today….It is tyranny over information. It’s a handful of people who are hostile to the Christian message and the plight of the individual deciding what’s good and bad, true and false….I am no conspiracy theorist; never have been. From where I sit, this danger is as clear as day.”
What can be done? Steven Andrew, a computer programmer in Silicon Valley, told my radio audience that he used to have five million Facebook followers a month. But after the election of Trump, he noticed a huge drop in those he was able to speak to on Facebook—down to about 97,000 people a month. He told me, “Facebook is blocking 98 percent of the people we used to reach.”
Knowing how the game works, how the algorithms are being programmed to skew in favor of liberal over conservative content, Andrew is working on providing a new social network platform for those who love God and country. His conservative alternative to Facebook is usa.life, and his search engine, a conservative counterpart to Google, is 1776free.com.
Shall the geeks inherit the earth? No, for Jesus Christ has decreed that that honor shall be bestowed on the meek (the godly—who exhibit “power under control,” the definition of meekness).
In the meantime, in the battle of ideas and in the attempt to get the Word out, conservatives would do well to recognize and to counteract the massive online censorship that is happening in our time.
—-Note from Jerry:
Those sounding the alarm on radical Islam are also experiencing censorship by social media. In a recent interview with Robert Spencer of Jihadwatch.com (recorded May 30, 2018), he told me: “There is a concerted effort by all of them—Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Google, all of them—to de-platform or choke out or to diminish the influence of anybody who dissents from the leftist agenda. And so when it comes to Facebook, for example, my website, jihadwatch.org, for years got about 20,000 referrals a day from Facebook. And in February 2017, one day in the middle of February, that dropped to 2000 a day and has never recovered. It has stayed about there ever since. And, Google, for example, for years, if you wrote in ‘jihad’ on Google, you would get my website, jihadwatch, because Google used to work on the basis of how much the site was congruent with the thing that was searched and how popular the site was. So I had the most popular site about jihad activity, and it was the closest thing to jihad, so if people searched for jihad, the first thing they would get is jihadwatch. But then last year, an imam in Texas started to complain to Google, that their results were Islamophobic, so-called, which means that they told the truth that he wanted to conceal. So he prevailed upon Google to skew their search results, so that now if you search for jihad, jihadwatch doesn’t come up for page after page after page on Google. And all you get is information or propaganda about how Islam is a religion of peace, and jihad is an interior, spiritual struggle, and all this deceptive nonsense. It’s the same thing for anything you search regarding Islam now. Google will only give you favorable-to-Islam results.”