Facebook is picking on the New York Post again. The $95 billion dollar tech giant doesn’t think the Post should be allowed to spout any old opinion that pops into their heads. They need guidance. They need discipline.
They need control.
For the third time in the last year, Facebook has banned sharing specific stories from the New York Post. They all challenged the left-wing narrative or would have damaged a left-wing candidate.
The trouble started when the Post ran a story saying that the coronavirus may have leaked from a Wuhan lab.
In the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic, we published a column that suggested the virus could have leaked from a Chinese virology lab. Facebook’s “fact checkers” decided this was an opinion you weren’t allowed to have and blocked the article. Today, it’s a commonly discussed theory, with officials from former CDC Director Dr. Robert Redfield to CNN’s Sanjay Gupta saying it can’t be discounted. Even the head of the World Health Organization (WHO) has said it can’t be ruled out.
I don’t recall seeing an apology from Facebook for their attempt to stifle a perfectly legitimate news story that had been circulating in Washington for weeks as the intel agencies began to connect the dots about Covid origins.
The second time Facebook censored the Post was in October when the newspaper ran some bombshell stories about the discovery of Hunter Biden’s laptop that appeared to show the son setting up a meeting for his father with a high-level Ukrainian official of an energy company “less than a year before the elder Biden pressured government officials in Ukraine into firing a prosecutor who was investigating the company, according to emails obtained by The Post.” Facebook claimed the information in the story came from hacking Hunter Biden’s laptop and Twitter agreed. Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey admitted to lawmakers months later it was a “total mistake.”
Now, the tech giant is using privacy concerns to ban the sharing of a blockbuster exposé of the real estate transactions of Black Lives Matter co-founder Patrisse Cullors.
The $3.2 million real estate spending spree of BLM co-founder Patrisse Khan-Cullors is newsworthy for two reasons. One, she’s an avowed Marxist, and as a public figure, it’s legitimate to question whether she’s practicing what she preaches. Secondly, as the article details, the finances of Black Lives Matter are opaque, a mixture of for-profits and tax-free nonprofits, and they don’t reveal how much its executives are paid. Are the people donating to BLM helping to pay for these properties?
Facebook told the “Tucker Carlson Show,” “This content was removed for violating our privacy and personal information policy.” They say that because someone could identify where the house is located from the description in the article, it would put Cullors in danger.
I call BS on that.
In fact, the Post was meticulous in their reporting.
Our article features some pictures of the properties she bought, but includes no addresses, in fact doesn’t even say the city in some cases. Our reporter compiled the information from public records.
Khan-Cullors’ lawyers apparently got a more sympathetic ear at Facebook, however, and five days after the article was published, it suddenly decided that it clashed with its “community standards.” “This content was removed for violating our privacy and personal information policy,” Facebook writes.
Needless to say, the Post is outraged.
This decision is so arbitrary as to be laughable. Does Facebook know how many newspapers, magazines and Web sites highlight the real estate purchases of the rich and famous? The next time People magazine covers Kim Kardashian’s latest mansion purchase, will it violate any community standards? How about running a picture of the resort Ted Cruz is staying at?
No, this rule has not been and will not be applied in any fair manner.
The Post gets little sympathy from the mainstream media because they’re owned by the hated Murdoch family. In fact, most outlets are probably cheering Facebook on. This controversy is barely being reported on except by a few backward outlets like Fox News. But, as Ben Franklin was supposed to have said, “If we do not hang together then we will surely hang separately.” If the media wanted to rein in social media, they could do it. They have the power.
What they lack is the collective will to act.