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Major Internet Platforms Ban Alex Jones

Facebook, YouTube, Spotify, and Apple accuse him of violating their platforms' speech codes.

|||LUCAS JACKSON/REUTERS/NewscomLUCAS JACKSON/REUTERS/NewscomAlex Jones' professional presence on several major internet platforms has come to an end.

Jones is a noted conspiracy theorist and the founder of the InfoWars website and podcast. In a Monday tweet, he confirmed that Facebook, YouTube, Spotify, and Apple had completely unpublished and/or removed his professional pages and podcasts. All four companies stated that Jones' inflammatory statements about Muslims, immigrants, members of the LGBT community, and other groups violated their terms of service.

"We believe in giving people a voice, but we also want everyone using Facebook to feel safe," Facebook said in a statement. "It's why we have Community Standards and remove anything that violates them, including hate speech that attacks or dehumanizes others. Earlier today, we removed four Pages belonging to Alex Jones for repeatedly posting content over the past several days that breaks those Community Standards." The company also called Jones a "repeat offender."

YouTube listed some similar reasons for its ban in an email to NBC News. Spotify and Apple removed the InfoWars podcast from their streaming services, though a number of InfoWars apps are still available for download on the Apple store.

Jones' banishment comes as social media giants attempt to balance free speech, onlight civility, and the fight against "fake news." Just last month, conservatives accused Twitter of disproportionately "shadow-banning" them when several Republican leaders, including Reps. Mark Meadows (R–N.C.), Jim Jordan (R-Ohio), Devin Nunes (R-Calif.), and Matt Gaetz (R-Fla.), found that their Twitter accounts did not appear on the drop-down menu in the search bar. (The shadowbans also extended further right, to people like white nationalist Richard Spencer and right-wing troll Mike Cernovich, though initially at least they did not affect Jones.) Facebook, meanwhile, was thrown into controversy after founder Mark Zuckerberg told an interviewer that Holocaust deniers should be able to post content on Facebook provided they weren't attempting to "organize harm" or attack someone else.

Though Zuckerberg's sister responded to that controversy by calling on the government to make certain kinds of speech illegal, she also suggested that social media platforms should not need to "decide who has the right to speech" and "police content in a way that is different from what our legal system dictates."

During the uproar over Mark Zuckerberg's comments, Reason's Robby Soave argued:

Policing hate on a very large scale is quite difficult given the frequently subjective nature of offense; we risk de-platforming legitimate viewpoints that are unpopular but deserve to be heard; and ultimately, silencing hate is not the same thing as squelching it.

Photo Credit: LUCAS JACKSON/REUTERS/Newscom

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  • Leo Kovalensky II||

    I guess now we finally know for sure which media outlets are controlled by the lizard people.

  • ||

    Your first mistake is thinking any of them are not.

  • Chipper Morning Baculum||

    Some are run by gay frog people.

  • ||

    AND YOU THINK THE LIZARD PEOPLE DON'T CONTROL THEM, TOO?!

    smdh

  • Quixote||

    As long as there is someone doing the controlling, then we should be okay. However, given that these conspiracy theories are not "puerile," given that the ideas they convey are clearly unacceptable, and given that they inevitably cause reputational damage—a huge threat to public order and security—we should be able to criminalize them too, rather than simply relying on a few Internet companies to do the policing for us. These people belong in prison, so let's tweak our laws about false speech just enough to get them in there. New York's highest court, as well as the Second Circuit, have created a striking precedent for the action we need to take. See the documentation of our nation's leading criminal "parody" case at:

    https://raphaelgolbtrial.wordpress.com/

  • ||

  • Quixote||

    Yes, that at least is good, but it is all the same deplorable that the criminal courts "declined" to impose a jail sentence, after nine years spent litigating such a significant case, with so many systemic resources and public monies spent on the matter. It is, moreover, altogether shameful that one of our most useful criminal statutes was declared unconstitutional on so-called "First Amendment" grounds—as if there were something okay about annoying speech. This unfortunate legal decision renders "opinion" pieces like this

    https://forward.com/opinion/385050/

    even more dangerous for public order and security. We academics, especially those of us teaching at NYU, must do everything we can to keep subversive writing of the sort from the eyes of students, so we can guide them towards a bolder, gentler, limper idea of freedom and help build a stronger, more cohesive society everywhere in the country.

  • ||

    Did you click on the link?

  • Quixote||

    Yes, I clicked on it to verify that they still have not removed the scandal of this subversive "opinion" piece by a left-wing academic "media-law specialist" from the Forward website.

  • Giant Realistic Flying Tiger||

    Please, when's the last time the French ran anything?

  • ||

    Please, when's the last time the French ran anything?

    Other than away!

    Amirite? Amirite?

    *looks around for high-five*

  • Giant Realistic Flying Tiger||

    *FIVES*

  • CE||

    If you ban the crazy guy who is willing to broadcast all the conspiracy theories, you're also banning the guy who is going to tell you when a real conspiracy is happening....

  • Unicorn Abattoir||

    Feature, not bug.

  • Marty Feldman's Eyes||

    Which doesn't matter, because the signal is lost in the noise anyway.

  • Zeb||

    Yup. That's why the smart authoritarians tolerate conspiracy theories, even when they are correct.

  • ||

    It's even pretty directly in the authoritarians' interests to have the true stuff swimming around in a pot full of half-baked conspiracy theories.

  • vek||

    Truth

  • vek||

    I've listened to Alex Jones a little bit here and there for probably 15ish years. The thing about him is that 99% of the facts he brings up are in fact verifiable as far as news stuff goes. His interpretations are where he can get a little zany. Also some of the facts he brings are up are him reporting on other peoples findings or scientific stuff or whatever, which means you have to consider the source as you would with anything.

    All in all I'm glad I've listened to him though, because he's made me aware of a lot of VERY crazy stuff that absolutely IS true over the years. Stuff that the MSM completely ignores. You just have to use your head when listening to him, and verify things on your own. But if you do he is actually a great source for a lot of interesting stuff "the man" doesn't want you to know about.

  • CE||

    I feel safer never having used Facebook.

  • Longtorso, Johnny||

    Thank God these companies conspired to remove him and his conspiracy theories.

  • Chipper Morning Baculum||

    He still has his loudspeaker.

  • Agammamon||

    I'm pretty sure the Founding Fathers never envisioned the day when a speaker could get a fully automatic amplified speaker cone in the local mall and then go out to schools and yell at them all day long.

  • SIV||

    I like to crank up "Dixie" when I have to drive by/through the Emory campus.

  • Chipper Morning Baculum||

    For those that don't know, Dixie is SIV's prized Orpington.

  • Nardz||

    Ah, Emory.
    It was getting pretty bad in my day, and that was a decade ago.
    What a weird place.

  • Hugh Akston||

    If you want to feel safe on social media, ignore/block the people you don't want to hear from. Banning morons like Jones only feeds their conspiracy theories that the Mainstream Media/Democrat/Build-a-Bear Group/Jewish/Gay Frog alliance is afraid of the purple-faced TRUTH.

  • Leo Kovalensky II||

    Exactly. Let everyone hear Alex Jones. He is by far his own worst enemy.

  • Diane Reynolds (Paul.)||

    I tried to hear him once but he just seemed kind of nutso.

    So don't click on his videos.

  • Zeb||

    Yeah, let the nutjobs do their thing. Everyone else can ignore them or laugh.

  • SQRLSY One||

    "...Mainstream Media/Democrat/Build-a-Bear Group/Jewish/Gay Frog alliance ..."

    You forgot the Lizard People!!!

  • vek||

    Well, they are afraid of the truth. Anybody that can't accept that the MSM is completely in the bag for a certain world view, a very leftist/globalist worldview, is an idiot. I tend to think the conspiracy is more of the "we all agree, and we're all correct, so let's help the proles become Woke like us" at cocktail parties variety, versus the smoky secret room with the big conference table everybody is sitting around... But that doesn't make it any less dangerous.

    And ALSO AJ is most definitely NOT an antisemite. He married a Jew, and half his staff is Jewish. That's one of many reasons the few actual Nazis that exist out there have always thought he was a shill!

  • Oli||

    Their companies, their rules. Not a very wise move though.

  • Nebelwerfer||

    Yeah man, they should build like their own platforms or something if they want freeze peach.

  • modis||

    Or just host everything on his website, which he can do fairly easily.

  • Nebelwerfer||

    And there it is, the inevitable "dude just build ur own platform lmao" comment.
    You really haven't been paying attention the past few years, have you?

  • modis||

    And you apparently haven't been paying attention to my comment, which clearly says he can easily host everything he does on a website.

    You keep making the same nonpoint.

    He doesn't need to build a new platform, or use any of the old ones.

    Are you even aware of how any of this works? The internet I mean? Because it seems you haven't been paying attention.

  • Nebelwerfer||

    Spare me your snark.
    You really think this is all that is going to happen? Like I wrote, you haven't been paying attention.

    I won't take long until somebody goes after his externals ads, his hosting, his DDoS mitigation service, his payment processors. This is the slow death of a thousand cuts nearly everybody to the right of Ben Shapiro has been fighting for the last few years.

  • modis||

    I can see why you listen to him.

  • Diane Reynolds (Paul.)||

    I'm not sure how easy it would be to run his own platform. And even if he could easily host a website that had enough bandwidth for millions of simultaneous video views, it's possible the hosting company (Amazon Cloud Services) would ban him too, because wokeness.

    Also, there's the intangibles-- like how Youtube is a platform of platforms. Meaning that there's a kind of network effect that takes place where users share like-videos and cross comment on them. Once he's isolated on his own platform, he may not hold the same audience. Which of course isn't Youtube's problem, that's Alex Jones's problem.

    All I ask is we start looking at Youtube et. al. like they're old media, because they're not new media any more.

  • modis||

    "I'm not sure how easy it would be to run his own platform"

    How are we using this word? Because I'm using it as a descriptor for a unique technology that he is being denied.

    Which makes sense based on the complaint I responded to.

    If you mean a different type of platform, as you seem to, he is already running his own. It has none of the issues you seem concerned about, and hosts a ton of data every day.

    "All I ask is we start looking at Youtube et. al. like they're old media, because they're not new media any more."

    I'm a libertarian. They can do business with whoever they want, period.

    And no, it's not ok to make them do business with him.

  • Diane Reynolds (Paul.)||

    If you mean a different type of platform, as you seem to, he is already running his own. It has none of the issues you seem concerned about, and hosts a ton of data every day.

    I didn't know that, I don't really follow the daily workings of the Alex Jones empire.

    'm a libertarian. They can do business with whoever they want, period.

    I totally agree.

    And no, it's not ok to make them do business with him.

    I also totally agree. And that wasn't the intent of my comment: "All I ask is we start looking at Youtube et. al. like they're old media, because they're not new media any more."

    What that meant is that it's helpful to understand how youtube et. al operate to people wondering the hows and whys of who gets banned and why. They're not new-media companies. They're very much old media companies and act like old media companies in every way imaginable.

  • SIV||

    That a depends on who "makes" them do business with him.

  • ||

    Also, there's the intangibles-- like how Youtube is a platform of platforms. Meaning that there's a kind of network effect that takes place where users share like-videos and cross comment on them. Once he's isolated on his own platform, he may not hold the same audience. Which of course isn't Youtube's problem, that's Alex Jones's problem.

    There's also a bit of libertarian property-rights asymmetry at play here too. Immigrants, legal or otherwise, have absolutely unassailable property rights on this side of the border because borders are just like, made up lines man. If Jones went to his own media either Youtube continues to do it's utmost to scrub their servers of any/all content, that other users posted, or they don't and infringe on copyright.

    I agree with your last sentence to the point that we shouldn't really have granted them any sort of acclaim above or about being 'new media' to begin with. Not that the two individuals are really parallels, but there's little principle difference from Jones and any other yellow journalist or even what pamphleteers like Paine. If Jones starts making pamphlets and paying a 3rd party to tweet the pamphlets do they ban the 3rd party as well? Eventually you're banning people because you can and/or without regard to your TOS.

  • Birmwood||

    " your TOS."

    Why do so many internet aspies talk about the TOS like it's some kind of inviolable contract, rather than nothing like it actually is?

    Part of their TOS is that they can change their TOS. Pointing to it as though it actually means anything is retarded.

  • ||

    Why do so many internet aspies talk about the TOS like it's some kind of inviolable contract, rather than nothing like it actually is?

    It really is impressive how much ignorance and stupidity you packed into every facet of this sentence. If you think 'Terms of Service' and 'Say what you do and do what you say' and/or voiding them whimsically (and getting away with it) are new or are somehow exclusively the domain of 'internet aspies', you're a bigger moron than they are.

    You're like the guy who sits down at the poker table because he knows who the sucker is but, after half an hour, can't figure out why he keeps losing to all these suckers.

  • Rufus T. Firefly.||

    Fuck off, you salty no pussy getting mother fucker.

  • Diane Reynolds (Paul.)||

    I agree with your last sentence to the point that we shouldn't really have granted them any sort of acclaim above or about being 'new media' to begin with.

    They used to be new media, but now they're not just old media because they've been around and are successful, they've fundamentally changed the way they operate to mimic the old-media model.

  • Alsø alsø wik||

    And then there's DNS, which has already been twisted into a form of shadow banning in some instances. We're not banning you from the digital world, all your fans just have memorize your IP address!

  • turco||

    Until his ISP / host is pressured to deplatform him.

  • TuIpa||

    Just get to the point where you are forcing businesses to accept him as a client then, slaver.

  • Diane Reynolds (Paul.)||

    The only thing libertarians need to keep at least ONE eye on is that Mark Zuckerberg likes to sit with heads of state who lean in during hot-mic moments and ask him politely when he's going to fix this "fake news problem."

    It leaves lingering questions about how much of this pressure is coming from the state-- now that modern western governments are quickly finding ways of outsourcing their censorship.

  • ||

  • vek||

    FYI, he has ALWAYS already had his own platform since before YouTube was even that big of a thing. You've always been able to watch/listen on his own websites.

    But obviously being on YouTube/other places REALLY helps with getting NEW listeners.

  • Mark22||

    Their companies, their rules.

    Not quite. They claim immunity from prosecution for copyright violations and other legal issues because they claim that they don't control content. That immunity evaporates if they start exercising editorial control over content.

  • dan'o en barrel||

    THIS. Once they move from host to publisher, how do they sidestep the inevitable lawsuits for copyright infringement?

  • Thomas O.||

    Has Facebook given any explanation to why they shadowbanned cannabis-related searches yet?

    Lumping weed in with Alex Jones et al. seems like a bad idea to me.

  • Eddy||

    It's like putting a gay frog in a pot of boiling water.

  • Just Say'n||

    It should be noted that Scott Horton (antiwar.com), Peter Van Buren (former dissident intelligence analyst with The Nation and The American Conservative), and Daniel McAdams (Ron Paul Institute) were all banned at the same time.

    It's as if Alex Jones' ban was a distraction in order to ban other voices that were proving to be problematic for "journalists" who were mouthing CIA talking points

  • Juice||

    Damn. Scott Horton: Known vessel of pure hatred.

  • ||

    "Alex Jones and other Conspiracy Theorists Banned"

  • Just Say'n||

    "other Conspiracy Theorists Banned"

    No, Brian Stelter and Rachel Maddow were not banned.

    I said Scott Horton, Peter Van Buren, and Daniel McAdams were banned

  • ||

    No, Brian Stelter and Rachel Maddow were not banned.

    Of course. Only Conspiracy Theorists need to be banned. Not Truthtellers.

    It's like you don't even First Amendment.

  • JoeJoetheIdiotCircusBoy||

    Really? I wonder if that's why "The Scott Horton Show" on apple itunes is now "The Libertarian Institute".

  • Just Say'n||

    No, that the institute that he and Sheldon Richman founded.

    They haven't been banned by itunes, as far as I know, just Twitter and possibly Facebook (I don't know about that one)

  • Juice||

    Paging Ms. Streisand.

  • Ranter||

    Slightly O/T, but Boingboing ("A directory of mostly wonderful things!") just posted some story about some idiot nazi getting knocked out. And it just made me fucking embarrassed how all the smug bastards commenting are so easily able to justify physical violence to rebut some idiots' repellent opinions.

    It's really depressing. Especially when the same assholes morally contorting themselves to justify assault on clearly 1st amendment grounds, are the same ones who call anyone right of Bernie a "Nazi".

  • ||

    Especially when the same assholes morally contorting themselves to justify assault on clearly 1st amendment grounds, are the same ones who call anyone right of Bernie a "Nazi".

    Projection is a powerful drug.

  • Rufus T. Firefly.||

    Just like the anti gay preachers that have been caught sucking some other dude in a park restroom or parked in an alley way.

  • EscherEnigma||

    Don't want to be kicked off of social media platforms like a thug, don't blatantly libel and slander folks while spouting conspiracy theories that get real people shot at like a thug.

  • Just Say'n||

    Alex Jones was banned, not Antifa

  • ||

    don't blatantly libel and slander folks while spouting conspiracy theories that get real people shot at

    So we should shut down The Weekly Standard?

  • Red Rocks White Privilege||

    Please. The worst thing that can be said about Alex Jones is that he's too enthusiastic as a water filter pitchman.

    Remember, folks, anything you say will be defined by your enemies as "hate speech", because they're too weak to physically shut you up themselves.

  • ||

    Don't want to be kicked off of social media platforms like a thug, don't blatantly libel and slander folks while spouting conspiracy theories that get real people shot at like a thug.

    You mean like this?

  • Muzzled Woodchipper||

    And now the hunt for every Christian/white/male hating post/video/podcast on all of those platforms begins. And there are plenty of them.

    It's the only result that CAN happen.

  • Cathy L||

    Begins?

  • Just Say'n||

    The problem is that people want the Left to live by their own standards, not that the Left has no standards.

  • Tony||

    That's crazy. There's no white straight male genocide planned. Don't be silly.

    Let me comfort you as best I can: there is absolutely not a vault where gay men are storing spooge in order to impregnate liberal college professors so as to remake the human race into a gender-bending socialist one-world government in which white straight men are employed as various domestic and civil servants until they all finally die out.

    It's just totally not happening.

  • Giant Realistic Flying Tiger||

    As somebody from the future, I can confirm Past Me is telling the truth. Unfortunately.

  • Chipper Morning Baculum||

    Tony plans to die in a pool of his own spooge. The pool is half filled already.

  • Giant Realistic Flying Tiger||

    It was almost full when I got arrested and sent back here.

  • Rufus T. Firefly.||

    I picture Tiny with a wife that is in her 69s, only blood thinners and three missing teeth.

  • Rufus T. Firefly.||

    Tony. *Stupid no edit feature*

  • Tony||

    Hi, I'm Tony. I like cock.

  • MarkLastname||

    Of course, I can confirm there are no similar plans for blacks, gays, Latinos, or women, but "totally real, not conspiracy theorist" journalists consider this 'denialist.'

  • Fancylad||

    there is absolutely not a vault where gay men are storing spooge
    Why are you so sticky then,Tony?

  • ||

    Jones' banishment comes as social media giants attempt to balance free speech, online civility, and the fight against "fake news."

    You know, the same way you balance witches and ducks.

  • Giant Realistic Flying Tiger||

    On Yellow Tony's penis?

  • Chipper Morning Baculum||

    That duck, and it would have to be a perching duck, such as aix sponsa, would die from exhaustion by having to continuously flap its wings to stay on that small piece of real estate, which would no doubt be coated with bird-lime to prevent its escape.

  • O Square||

    As someone who knows the binomial names of hundreds of North American birds, bravo, your post made someone very hot n bothered.

  • Weygand||

    WTF....

    Funny, but bird lime??

    WTF is bird lime?

  • Rufus T. Firefly.||

    It's something only lawyers that specializein bird law can answer.

  • Last of the Shitlords||

  • BestUsedCarSales||

    Jones' banishment comes as social media giants attempt to balance free speech, onlight civility, and the fight against "fake news.

    I feel like the online civility and free speech parts aren't doing too well.

  • ||

    Those two are the least important of the three.

  • Eddy||

    Shut up, hater.

  • ||

    online civility

    The internet used to lack a stab someone in the face button, then the police invented SWATting and the internet got a lot more civil.

  • Diane Reynolds (Paul.)||

    We're going to have civility, and it'll be MY civility, bucko.

  • Jim Logajan||

    Is this merely a case of one platform making a move and the rest follow? Or is there someone coordinating the initiation of these bans?

  • Eddy||

    You see, this is the kind of conspiracy-mongering we don't need on the Internet.

  • Jim Logajan||

    Is this merely a case of one platform making a move and the rest follow? Or is there someone coordinating the initiation of these bans?

  • ||

    I would imaging it's a case of "look - everybody's banning Alex Jones all of a sudden. We certainly don't want to be the musical chair he winds up sitting in - ban him, quick!"

  • Just Say'n||

    This is a case of mainstream news outlets losing all credibility and desperately trying to blame it on someone else rather than themselves. So they all decided that Alex Jones should be banned, because we are all suppose to pretend like anyone actually takes him seriously.

  • vek||

    This was obviously a concerted effort. He had been specifically mentioned as a problem in the congressional testimony the other week. They were totally planning this. But conspiracy doesn't exist in the real world ever... Somehow the MSM all just happens to report on the same story, with the exact same spin, instantly when a news event happens... Just like how every major platform in the internet world just magically decides to ban a guy on the exact same day. Come on.

  • Tony||

    I'd like to thank Reason for having no community standards on its comments boards.

  • SQRLSY One||

    EVERYONE should be banned except for MEEEEEE!!!!!!!!!

  • Giant Realistic Flying Tiger||

    What about your squirrel bros, bro? Why you wanna ban your squirrel bros?

  • SQRLSY One||

    Well OK then, the squirrel bros can stay, 'cause there's just NO WAY to get rid of them!!!!

  • Zeb||

    That could be a sincere comment. Tony has persistently stuck around, he must see something in this place.

  • Chipper Morning Baculum||

    Tony is not so bad. Plus he can fire off a good joke once in a while.

  • Zeb||

    Yeah, I got no problem with Tony. He's really not so bad as internet lefties go.

  • Libertymike||

    Sometimes, he will sincerely reply to questions or propositions I pose to him.

    Not so sure if John, Sevo, and sarcasmic would agree with you, though.

  • Zeb||

    He can be a prick too, but honestly, if Tony represented the typical left-of-center person, that really wouldn't be so bad.

  • Giant Realistic Flying Tiger||

    That's probably the nicest compliment I've ever received from someone who wasn't a lover.

  • Leo Kovalensky II||

    What was the nicest compliment from a lover?

  • Tony||

    "Damn, I bet a lot of ducks could perch on that."

  • Leo Kovalensky II||

    *have "perched"

  • Nardz||

    I like Tony.
    He's wrong about many, many things - but has personality and I enjoy quite a few of his quips.
    He seems to have compartmentalized the psychosis that is Progressivism and, while it almost completely controls his opinions and occasionally his mood, he's able to simultaneously have a personality at times.
    And he's so very sincere.
    I've said it before and stand by it - Tony is a perfect progressive.
    He occupies the correct space for a progressive - unable to impose, but free to speak.

  • SusanM||

    Is that ironic or not? Seriously, regardless of what you might say of conservative/libertarian comment sections, they're a lot less ban-happy that left websites.

  • Tony||

    Depends on the site. I got perma-banned from one of the wack-job conservative ones and my only offense was not being a slack-jawed right-wing fanatic.

    But no I truly appreciate it. If for no other reason than I often like to express myself with vulgarities.

  • SusanM||

    As do I. I've been banned on ThinkProgress, Medium, LGBTQ Nation, Joe.My.God, three different atheist pages on Patheos and had my Facebook social plug-in shut down. It's the burden of a Gadfly, I suppose, but it makes me snicker when progs sneer about the conservative thought bubble.

  • Tony||

    The left's flirtations with limitations on free speech is something I'm working on with them. We can have bad ideas, occasionally.

  • Just Say'n||

    If "occasionally" is a synonym for "practically always" then I think we can all agree

  • Brian||

    What's scary is how much the bad idea looks like Nazis.

    Where's the book burning pile?

  • ||

    It's cute and charming when the left does it.

  • SQRLSY One||

    Tony Sir Dude Sir, you are an A-OK Dude-Sir in my book, especially when you say stuff-and-stuff like that them thar stuff-and-stuff like you just said!!!

    And so therefor I take back ALL of the that-them-thar many-many bad things that the Reverend Aurthur Kirkland said about you!!!

  • Chipper Morning Baculum||

    Hey, SQRLSY One, because everyone is on here solely for my personal entertainment, can you please get in an argument with Hank Phillips sometime? Just say something deragoratory about Any Rand and you should be off to an epic argument. Watching you two go at it would be like watching a Piraha shaman argue with a Burushaski Wankel engine repairman.

  • SQRLSY One||

    Yeah man, gotcha, I can see if I can recall to do that...

    I recall M. Scott Peck (Christian psychiatrist popular in the 1980s and then on, but now dead) saying that he noticed that there were never any children (of any significance) in Ayn Rand novels... Children are a tough nut to crack for the Rand fanatics. Personally I have a hard-on against Rand for...

    1) Running a "personality cult" that was anti-freedom; one had to worship her. WTF??! Not very libertarian... But then, she didn't like libertarians...

    2) Denigrating voluntary, free-choice charity... Which I think should be valued, treasured, respected. WTF, Rand?!??!

  • ||

    he noticed that there were never any children

    I noticed that, too. It was one of the main things that struck me about Galt's Gulch. It made me think if I ever wrote a novel set in the future, I would throw in a scene where someone stumbles on a ghost town in the CO mountains full of dead couples whose one mistake in designing their utopia was "bring along some couples of child-bearing age."

  • SQRLSY One||

    Yeah man, I had to look it up, very interesting...

    http://fractalenlightenment.co.....in-the-now

    Pirahã, an Indigenous Tribe Living in the Now

  • Libertymike||

    You are an instigator par excellence.

  • Libertymike||

    Not you, Most Righteous Feelz, but Chipper.

    You have a veritable salmagundi of awesome attributes, but too good natured to be considered an instigator.

  • SQRLSY One||

    salmagundi = ...

    a dish of chopped meat, anchovies, eggs, onions, and seasoning.
    a general mixture; a miscellaneous collection.

    Ye eggheads are TOOO MUCH for me, forcing me to get edu-macated!!!!

  • lap83||

    The left's flirtations with limitations on free speech is something I'm working on with them.

    are you? lol

  • Last of the Shitlords||

    I've been banned on WaPo, Vox, NYT, AP, Reuters, ThinkProgress, Seattle PI, at least a dozen more regional newspapers, Green Car Reports for being a climate denier, Car for same, Bleeding Cool for making body shaming remarks about Amy Schumer playing The Thing without needing a costume or CGi and calling all the progs peodphiles who called me racist, and Deadline Hollywood on at least a half dozen accounts.

    That's just a cursory review. I'm sure if I took the time, the full list of bans is probably triple that. All from progtard sites who can't deal.

  • MarkLastname||

    Of curse you would, otherwise you wouldn't be able to comment.

  • SusanM||

    It's a fun gang. Maybe I'm just a contrarian at heart.

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    We believe in giving people a voice, but we also want everyone using Facebook to feel safe...

    Well, almost everyone.

  • ||

    Yeha so the guy says anything they do not like hence banned. If people feel unsafe because of his comments then they were never meant to be safe. Fuck em.

  • Last of the Shitlords||

    They want people to feel 'safe'? How does Facebook even enter into that equation? It's never occurred to me that Facebook could possibly play a role in anyone's relative personal safety.

    Are they handing out magic force fields that can be raised on command?

  • DajjaI||

    I've been prowling the sewers of the internet for years and only rarely did I end up in the Alex Jones cesspool. I honestly know very little about him and his positions. I guess the most controversial is that he thinks these mass shootings are fake, and his followers then attack the victims. This is horrifying, and perhaps he should have done more to speak out against this. To my regret and chagrin, I don't know the answer. But on the other hand I'm a free speech advocate, so this decision scares me on principle. Who's next? My feeling about these mass shootings is that they are mostly caused by autism 'treatment'. This is also a very unpopular position. Will I be next to be accused of 'hate speech' or 'incitement' and banned?

    On a side note, I am currently banned on twitter, and was temporarily banned on facebook, for violating their community standards. They never told me exactly what I did wrong. From what I can piece together, it was a false accusation of homophobia. Ironic, because I'm a strong gay-rights supporter.

  • DajjaI||

    ^ At the risk of being banned again by Reason, I forgot to mention.

  • Giant Realistic Flying Tiger||

    I know why you got banned.

  • Unicorn Abattoir||

    I'm curious Dajjal, why do you still post as addictionmyth on Federalist?

  • DajjaI||

    Who's Dajjal?

  • vek||

    Actually AJ DOES NOT think the school shootings were faked. That is in fact a made up lie the MSM pushed. I think it might have been after Sandy Hook where basically the day it was happening he said that it seemed really fishy, and he wouldn't be surprised if it was a false flag. Which is dicey. But a far cry from "it didn't happen and is all made up" which is how they have portrayed his opinion.

  • Diane Reynolds (Paul.)||

    "We believe in giving people a voice, but

    Thanks for playing, mega-media corporations.

  • Just Say'n||

    "PROG PLAYBOOK
    1. Create undefined ambiguous rules
    2. Impose punishments on those who are prominent or pariahs
    3. Watch those who earn revenue correct voluntarily in direction of submission
    4. Claim to be for free expression"

    - Michael Malice

  • Last of the Shitlords||

    Is Michae Malice the new sidekick for Marvel's Mr. Sinister?

  • Brian||

    It's not an info war if you're not banned.

  • macsnafu||

    I don't feel safe about all those people who want to raise taxes, have single-payer health care, fight more foreign wars, cause more monetary/price inflation, want to stop me from eating meat, exhaling carbon, using straws, and a bunch of other things. Can we get the social media to ban *those* people, too??
    ;-)

  • Zeb||

    I've said this many times, but I really hate the way the word "hate" gets used in this context. They really just mean being an asshole. Which really isn't motivated by hate most of the time.
    But most people seem to just accept it and are happy to use the word that way now. It's not good. "Hate" is a strong word. It should mean more than casual bigotry, nasty trolling or dickishness. Or saying certain words that have been deemed beyond the pale.

  • ||

    Fuck social media.

  • Bubba Jones||

    I don't understand the point of podcasts. Why would I spend 20 minutes listening to something I could read in 5?

  • Juice||

    You would not want to read the transcript of most podcast episodes.

  • Birmwood||

    What does your question have to do with podcasts?

  • Kivlor||

    I dont really listen to any, but the appeal for me would be that I can catch it while I drive

  • TuIpa||

    Drive where Cathy?

  • Diane Reynolds (Paul.)||

    It's hard to read and do the speed limit. Trust me on this, I'm stuck behind these idiots every day.

  • Zeb||

    Probably something to do with how the podcasters present the material.

    Why do you listen to music when you could just look at the sheet music?

  • ||

    Why would I spend 20 minutes listening to something I could read in 5?

    Why bother reading it when you can just show up with a pre-formed opinion?

  • Kivlor||

    As long as the corporations are the censor, and not government, censorship is perfectly fine. Stop bitching and get back to work serfs.

  • TuIpa||

    Hi Cathy.

  • Kivlor||

    Cathy?

  • TuIpa||

    Yeah. Your sockpuppet.

  • Kivlor||

    Ah, the irony of me being accused of being a sockpuppet by "Tulpa". Are you the original Tulpa? People used to accuse me of being that one too

  • TuIpa||

    Ok Cathy.

  • TuIpa||

    By the way, Cathy doesn't use "irony" properly either.

  • Libertymike||

    There were others.

  • Diane Reynolds (Paul.)||

    You know who else had a sockpuppet?

  • Kivlor||

    Mary?

  • TuIpa||

    Probably that bitch was almost as crazy as you Cathy.

  • ||

    Liam Lynch and Matt Crocco?

  • Happy Chandler||

    Shari Lewis?

  • Diane Reynolds (Paul.)||

    Congrats, you actually had the correct answer that was in my head when I typed that.

  • Diane Reynolds (Paul.)||

    Sorry, Happy Chandler, you have the correct answer.

  • Fats of Fury||

    Shari Lewis?

  • Fats of Fury||

    Oops. I meant Schicklgruber.

  • Fats of Fury||

    That's what Xi said.

  • Weygand||

    Lulz....that was the only thing in these comments worth reading

  • Juice||

    "When you tear out a man's tongue, you are not proving him a liar, you're only telling the world that you fear what he might say. Soon the world shall know, they're turning the friggin frogs gay"

    /not mine, stolen from the internets, too funny not to share

  • MaleMatters||

    How dare Facebook, YouTube, Spotify, and Apple silence someone I had never heard of before.

  • Fancylad||

    ...and never will hear of again.

    Funny that.

  • Weigel's Cock Ring||

    Jones should have spread the message of "kill all white men" instead. He'd probably be running the NY Times by now!

  • John||

    They are really concerned about hatred and racism. That is why Sarah Jeong got banned too, right?

  • Kivlor||

    Yes. And Sarah didn't get banned because she's not racist. As a female and minority she can't be because racism requires power+privilege and we all know only whites have that

  • TuIpa||

    Why are you not using your Cathy sockpuppet?

  • Kivlor||

    Jones should join Jared Taylor in suing these companies for violating California law, which is the jurisdiction almost all of them are in.

  • TuIpa||

    Tell us more, Cathy.

  • Zeb||

    Shut the fuck up, Lone Wacko!

  • Diane Reynolds (Paul.)||

    In a meta time-space continuum foldover, Tulpa is actually Tulpa.

  • Zeb||

    And possibly also a Tulpa.

  • ||

    Inconceivable!

  • Diane Reynolds (Paul.)||

    Take heart, there is good news on the horizon.

    Numbers using Facebook have dropped significantly since 2015, with YouTube, Instagram and Snapchat more popular

    [...]

    When asked which of the online platforms teens used the most, only 10% said Facebook. Thirty-five percent said Snapchat, 32% said YouTube and 15% said Instagram, which is also owned by Facebook.
  • Ken Shultz||

    Facebook lost $160 billion in market capitalization over about a week--much of it being about subscriber growth slowing as disgust with the company grew among consumers.

    The market imposes costs for being evil. Gotta love that market.

  • Rev. Arthur L. Kirkland||

    The market imposes costs for being evil. Gotta love that market.

    Alex Jones and his fans are learning this.

  • Giant Realistic Flying Tiger||

    ...see, this is just more fodder for my theory that Kirkland is an unemployed deadbeat.

  • Fancylad||

    Not just any unemployed deadbeat, but a weeaboo fudanshi Hetalia shipper.

  • Last of the Shitlords||

    I think he has a job cleaning up at some rich conservatives office. So his envy has made him angry and bitter.

  • Ken Shultz||

    Which market are you talking about?

    Consumers don't pay for podcasts. Advertisers apparently do.

    The consumer market isn't shutting down Alex Jones.

    The advertising market is.

    There's a reason why broadcast television sucks and HBO doesn't.

    The content for broadcast television is made to tailor to the tastes of advertisers.

    HBO is selling to people who pay for content.

  • SIV||

    HBO totally sucks. The lack of commercials for anything other than HBO programming is its only virtue.

  • Ken Shultz||

    It apparently caters to the tastes of other people that don't share your tastes.

    That being said, the tastes of the people who matter are the ones that are paying.

    Subscribers drive HBO content, make it salacious, sexy, etc.

    Advertisers drive broadcast television content, make it unoffensive to as many people as possible.

    It's all about price signals.

    That's the problem with YouTube, Twitter, Facebook, and other models driven by advertising. Consumers aren't paying for podcasts. Advertisers are paying for podcasts.

    Consumers don't care so much about whether Alex Jones is being offensive--because they aren't paying for the content.

    Advertisers don't want to be associated with Alex Jones because he says things that are offensive.

    Punk rock was highly offensive. They wouldn't play it on the radio. The artists were selling directly to the fans--had to start their own record companies.

    The radio played Steely Dan and the Carpenters.

  • Zeb||

    I don't really know what Instagram and Snapchat are. Are they any less awful than Facebook?

    I'd like a social platform that is just for useful organization and communication, and not for proving to your friends how stupid and vapid you are. But I guess I'm in a minority there.

  • Diane Reynolds (Paul.)||

    I don't really know what Instagram and Snapchat are. Are they any less awful than Facebook?

    Instagram is largely an 'interest' site for photographs. While I'm sure there is political content on the site, given my experience, it would be weird and hard to follow-- or at least I'd think it would.

    Instagram is primarily a photo-sharing service. Hell, even I'm on Instagram, so that tells you how un-social-network-ey it is.

    Snapchat is an ephemeral picture/video clip sharing site that doesn't save the conversation history. You look at it and then it's gone. That's why the young ppl like it, hard for parents to see what's up. I suspect Snapchat is going to be very difficult to monetize because of that.

  • Mcgoo95||

    One's for pictures, the others for dickpicks

  • ion hydro||

    Try reddit. It's broken up into topics and is anonymous so no needing to prove to your friends how stupid and vapid you are. Parts of it are filled with stupidly for sure, especially the politics/news sections. But they have sections for practically any interest or hobby. Guns, sailing, watching videos of people falling on their face, porn, practically anything you can imagine. It has its flaws but you can organize and communicate about what ever you like.

    https://www.reddit.com/r/Libertarian/

    https://www.reddit.com/r/guns/

    https://www.reddit.com/r/birding/

    https://www.reddit.com/r/skiing/

    https://www.reddit.com/r/knitting/

  • ion hydro||

    Try reddit. It's anonymous so no one is trying to prove how awesome their life is to their friends. It's broken up into topics, they have sections for practically anything. Guns, sailing, knitting, porn, furry porn, skiing, practically any topic you can think of. The politics/news sections do skew heavily left but you can have some good conversations and find some good information about whatever you're interested in. I tried posting some links but apparently reason has a spam filter? Who knew.

  • ion hydro||

    Looks like my first comment finally posted.. Reason should switch to reddit style comments. It's infinitely better, and you can downvote people you disagree with!

  • Echospinner||

    Neutral news to me. Remember MySpace? Everyone knows that Facebook is mom's social media. These things come and go which is why these companies need to diversify in the long run.

    It is good news if you have stock in google bad if you have Facebook. I did notice that people are buying up shares in Facebook after the big drop.

  • Diane Reynolds (Paul.)||

    These things come and go which is why these companies need to diversify in the long run.

    Facebook doesn't innovate, they purchase innovation. In the modern social-networking business milieu, Facebook as a product is a dinosaur and it's probably nearing the end of its shelf life. As a company, I have no doubt they'll be around for a good while.

  • Ken Shultz||

    Like I wrote this morning, because I think it should be legal for three companies to dominate whose voices are heard and whose aren't, that doesn't mean I need to like it, and that's basically the way it is with podcasting. If your podcast isn't on iTunes, Spotify, or Amazon, then your podcast has been effectively eliminated from the national conversation.

    http://www.statista.com/statis.....in-the-us/

  • Diane Reynolds (Paul.)||

    If your podcast isn't on iTunes, Spotify, or Amazon, then your podcast has been effectively eliminated from the national conversation.

    I'm not convinced that's true. Podcasts... the audio kind can really be run off any website-- and further, it would be a fairly trivial matter to set up "podcast networks" where one company can host thousands of podcasts. I believe these already exist in that popular podcasters have actually built such networks outside of Youtube, facesite etc.

  • Zeb||

    The few podcasts I listen to I get directly from their own websites. But I'm weird and don't like to sign up for things and I prefer to listen to things when I'm at home.

  • Ken Shultz||

    Take a look at the link I provided.

    There are websites like the ones you're describing. 95% of consumers say they don't get their podcasts from there.

    If 95% of the American people aren't buying what you're selling where you're selling it, then you've been effectively shut out of the national conversation.

    I'm not saying this isn't the way it should be, but I am saying that this is the way it is.

  • Ken Shultz||

    Take a look at the link I provided.

    There are websites like the ones you're describing. 95% of consumers say they don't get their podcasts from there.

    If 95% of the American people aren't buying what you're selling where you're selling it, then you've been effectively shut out of the national conversation.

    I'm not saying this isn't the way it should be, but I am saying that this is the way it is.

  • lap83||

    I think you're being hyperbolic. If I set up a podcast, like with any product, I don't need 95% of customers. I just need the few who are like me....probably 1% or less. Yeah, if I only have it on my website there are a lot more challenges, like having to do more marketing and SEO to attract readers, but it's not necessarily any harder to compete than on an established platform. I guarantee you that the 95% are probably collectively listening to a relatively small percentage of all of the podcasts that are published on those places. Just because something is free doesn't mean it has a built-in audience. But if you get the audience you can easily move to your own space and you'll have more control over your content. FTR, I listen to two podcasts on occasion...both I access from their self-hosted websites

  • Ken Shultz||

    If you're used to being accessible to 100% of the podcast market, and three companies decide to cut you off so that only 10% of the podcast market now goes to sites where they can download your podcast, then you've been effectively cut out of the national conversation--0as far as podcasts go.

    Nothing hyperbolic about that.

  • Ken Shultz||

    From a legal standpoint, I see no reason for the government to get involved in regulating podcasts or their distribution, but I'm not sure Alex Jones doesn't have a civil case against these distributors. For one thing, the terms of service may have changed since some of the podcasts in question were created.

    Alex Jones invested time, effort, and money into providing content for these companies--which they have used to build their media brands and businesses. It is unclear to me that they can arbitrarily change their terms of service after the content was created--and deprive Alex Jones of the benefits of investing in their platforms. Alex Jones might have invested his content and built his brand elsewhere if he'd known they could arbitrarily pull the rug out from under him and arbitrarily change the rules after the fact.

    The second question I have is about collusion.

    We've seen content companies go after gun related content in the wake of mass shootings, much like they're going after Alex Jones. If Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and PayPal all get together and say, "If you ban gun channels and gun sales, don't worry, we won't host any of the content creators you kick to the curb", then I'm not sure that's libertarian or legal. Was Alex Jones the victim of collusion? Did iTunes, Spotify, YouTube, Twitter, et. al. independently decide to target Alex Jones all at the same time, or were their discussions and coordination among them about targeting Alex Jones?

  • Diane Reynolds (Paul.)||

    Was Alex Jones the victim of collusion?

    Of course he was. You think all these companies suddenly came to the same conclusion at the exact same time?

  • Ken Shultz||

    That's what their lawyers will say!

  • EscherEnigma||

    […] the terms of service may have changed since some of the podcasts in question were created.


    "may have"? They've almost certainly changed. As outlined in every ToS for years and years now. The ability of a ToS to change, and require you to accept the changes to continue using the service (including continuing hosting your content on the service) is kind of old hat.

    If you want to argue that changing ToS and requiring folks to accept them to continue using a service you're already somewhat invested in is coercive, I'll back you. But legally speaking the ToS probably isn't going to be a weak-point.

  • Ken Shultz||

    I'm trying to be as kind to the companies in question as possible--I don't want to see my ideas, here, misconstrued as if I were calling for government regulation.

    That being said, if these companies violated their contract with Alex Jones, then Alex Jones has the court system at his disposal to protect his rights--and it looks to me like Alex Jones has an excellent case to make.

  • Cyto||

    The contract specifically says they can change it any time they like. That's been standard since the beginning. Generic terms of service are always very one sided.

  • Ken Shultz||

    Good thing they didn't put a statement in there saying that they could treat his children as property and enslave them and all their descendants.

    Actually, some contractual clauses are unenforceable. One example might be a clause that says they really have no obligations to anyone because they can change the terms whenever they like.

  • Sedona Vortex Hunter||

    they can change it anytime they like and from that point on enforce that change.... until they decide to change it again.

    But I am not sure they can legally change it at any point and then have that change apply to past behavior that they already allowed. The change anytime clause applies to changing it and then from that point in time applying the change. At least that's how I understand it to work.

  • Happy Chandler||

    Alex Jones didn't provide anything to the companies. They provided him free hosting and monetization. You use their sites, you follow their rules. They don't have to be fair or make sense.

    Companies can work together to set standards and discuss issues such as this. That's not illegal. It's not like bid rigging or colluding on salary. And, it's more likely like airline ticket prices, where one company changes prices and often the other companies follow suit.

    How come Conservatives can't run any decent tech companies?

  • Fats of Fury||

    Ask Brendan Eich .

  • MarkLastname||

    Kind of like asking why there are so few communist film makers in Hollywood in the early 50s. Because leftist McCarthyists run (or try to)them out of the business a la Brendan Eich, Peter Thiel, James Damore, etc.

  • Happy Chandler||

    There's a difference to black listing based on unfounded rumors and companies ousting executives when their workers are revolting, or when they cause a hostile work environment.

    Eich has a CEO job. He wasn't black listed.

  • Ken Shultz||

    "Alex Jones didn't provide anything to the companies. "

    He provided them with content.

    If you feel the need to pretend you're dumber than you are in order to make a point, then the point you're making should probably be reconsidered.

  • Cyto||

    And buckets of money. They take home a bunch of cash for every bit that their content creators get.

  • Happy Chandler||

    And they decided that it wasn't worth it to them. That's a business decision. One they have the right to make.

  • Ken Shultz||

    They have contractual obligations.

    Contractual obligations don't disappear simply because one party decides abiding by them isn't worth it anymore.

    Is this the first time you've heard about this contract thingy?

  • Diane Reynolds (Paul.)||

    Alex Jones didn't provide anything to the companies.

    That's not true at all. He provided them eyeballs, and their entire business model is eyeballs. No eyeballs, no money.

  • KennethJohnKelly||

    Apparently they decided that the eyeballs of Alex Jones followers weren't worth much.

  • Qsl||

    Ya, the real bugbear in all this is the TOS and accommodation, if any, after changes.

    The more authoritarianish libertarians will cite property rights uber alles, but I'm not certain that is a good reading. It is essentially a violation of contract from the social media companies without a clear process for resolution or assessment of damages, or even to be released from said contract. I mean even in Youtube's PR, they stress partnerships, which at least implies some obligations on Youtube's behalf.

    Of course it could be argued by Jone's continued use of the platform, that is de facto evidence of consent to the new policy changes, but as the notion of consent is really muddled right now, that could go either way.

    And I could see other consequences like thousands of small claims cases made against Youtube for violating their own TOS to holding the company responsible for the consequences of any content as they are policing it now.

    In any case, I expect people to start reading TOS more closely before committing to any platform.

    I don't think collusion really has much legal weight, but it does have echos of gamergate, which definitely cut into several publisher's bottom line.

    And piquing the interest of weaponized autism to cause mischief probably wasn't the smartest move.

    /just thinking outloud

  • Ken Shultz||

    "Of course it could be argued by Jone's continued use of the platform, that is de facto evidence of consent to the new policy changes, but as the notion of consent is really muddled right now, that could go either way."

    Was the content in question in violation of the terms of service at the time that he created the content?

    Somebody should have to answer that question.

  • Cyto||

    They can't even answer the question of exactly how it violates the TOS. Just that it violates their standards. Standards that are not objective.

  • Doug Heffernan||

    These platforms didn't really shut down any of Jones' pages.

    It may appear so because of an elaborate fake by the Bush administration.

    Don't fall for it. The pages are still there, despite any apparent evidence to the contrary.

  • Zeb||

    I wonder if porn tube sites will start picking up more content that gets banned like they did with some gun stuff. They don't get as much attention in the media, but they get a lot of eyeballs. And it would be a funny turn of events if porn sites become the place for any interesting content that deviates from the acceptable norms.

  • Diane Reynolds (Paul.)||

    but they get a lot of eyeballs.

    That's not the only balls they're gettin'.

  • Zeb||

    I should have worked "nuts" in there somewhere.

  • Giant Realistic Flying Tiger||

    You don't have the cashews.

  • EscherEnigma||

    It's possible, but I have strong doubts that Alex Jones (or any online personality) that moves their vids over XTube or something will ever get the same kind of traffic (and thus revenue) as they did while hosted on YouTube and other "traditional" Social Media.

    Or to put it another way... the "free market" has, up to this point, rejected every attempt at a "conservative" social media site. Viewers, even self-identified "conservative" viewers, just aren't willing to support it. And while Alex Jones does have some very dedicated fans, he probably won't be able to buck this trend.

    It is, of course, possible that this will be the "straw that broke the camel's back", and leads to a "ConservaTube" or something actually taking off. But I strongly doubt it.

  • Happy Chandler||

    Like Conservapedia?

    It's apparently still kicking!

  • MarkLastname||

    This is for the same reason efforts to boycott Chik Fil-A and Walmart fail miserably: most people care more about the quality of the product than the politics of the managers.

  • Chipper Morning Baculum||

    Or don't care.

  • Chipper Morning Baculum||

    It wouldn't be the first time that the storefront for sex is at the forefront of new liberties. Historically, prostitutes led the way in liberating women. Often, they were the first female property owners in an area and of course led the trends in fashion. Fashion is usually a generation behind prostitutes. So prostitutes should be celebrated by feminists. Instead, in this bizarro world of ours, they are viewed as victims devoid of agency.

  • Diane Reynolds (Paul.)||

    And it's also important to remember, that it's not just Facetube, Youchat and Instabook that can control content, the so-called content-neutral backbone providers can get into the game.

    "Nazis, however repulsive, have the same speech rights as every other American. In demanding that back-end web companies kick them off the internet for legally protected expression, activists are effectively asking them to limit public debate -- according to whatever vague or opaque corporate principles they might dream up. Do you trust GoDaddy with that responsibility?"
    Don't Kick Nazis off the Internet

    The Editorial Board,

    Bloomberg View

    September 5, 2017
  • John||

    And it is so obvious that this was an act of collusion. No way is all of these companies acting in concert consistent with ant trust law

  • Kivlor||

    I honestly know next to nothing RE trust law, but I had been wondering if someone else could weigh in on it, because it sounds like an anti trust issue

  • Cyto||

    There is definitely an article to be written on this topic. Many in depth articles, actually.

    I'm sure we'll see them on the pages of the NY Times and the Tribune in the next couple of days.

  • Tony||

    I wonder if they're celebrating at Lizard People headquarters in Chappaqua.

  • SQRLSY One||

    My Lizard People will get back to your Lizard People on that, hold tight...

  • MarkLastname||

    My lizard person is certainly happy right now.

  • Giant Realistic Flying Tiger||

    Are we talking about our penises?

  • Chipper Morning Baculum||

    Your penis might be a lizard, but mine is a cobra.

  • Mickey Rat||

    So how does a social media page make anyone feel unsafe?

  • earthandweather||

    Let's be completely honest - It's incredibly easy to avoid being offended by Alex Jones....It starts with not listening to him. I can't imagine there's a person who had been watching his shows and was fine with the content until all of a sudden Alex blind sided them with some offense. "Did you hear what Alex Jones said?" No I didn't, and I'd kinda like to keep it that way.
    It's not like a lesbian Muslim teenager is going to hear Jones' condescending and inflammatory rhetoric in the normal course of her day...Though it's quite possible that someone will run gleefully to tell her all about it.

  • Cyto||

    To make your point more concisely, nobody is worried that they will personally be offended. They are, however, very much interested in making sure that no other people hear anything that they personally deem offensive. Mind control by proxy, as it were.

  • Rockabilly||

    Compared with ANTIFA, Alex Jones seems harmless. You can even see his face. He gives hugs and not violent beatings.

  • Cyto||

    Antifa is fighting against violent hate speech. Alex Jones is violent hate speech. Duh!

  • Bob Armstrong||

    So people will have to go directly to https://www.infowars.com/ .

  • Tony||

    Uh ew.

  • gphx||

    The Comment box is the digital equivalent of a blank piece of paper. Neither paper manufacturers nor Social Media companies should be responsible for what people do with their products.

    What's scary is how many people will agree with Ms. Zuckerberg's call for the government to prohibit speech they find offensive.

    The obsession with this lately seems like a MSM plot to accomplish precisely that with themselves as the arbiters of what is true and what is offensive.

  • Cyto||

    They've been on that track for a long, long time. Way back in the 90's they came after AM radio because of Rush Limbaugh and other conservative hosts. When attempts to use the government to restrict free speech failed, they funded "Air America" to counter Limbaugh. They failed miserably as a commercial entity, but we did get Al Franken and Rachel Maddow from the deal.

    Once AM radio became kinda irrelevant, they focused on Fox News - coming after hosts, executives and owners with personal allegations... something that probably led indirectly to the "eating their own" phenomenon we are seeing today with #metoo.

    Then it was social media. Obama was able to get all of his Silicon Valley buddies to agree to help him in his elections. That partnership grew and as Clinton faltered, they promised to help eliminate "fake news", appointing a far-left commission to oversee factchecking.

    Now it has grown to a fever pitch, with the point of the spear being Antifa's violent protests, campus hysteria about conservative voices and social media.

  • vek||

    Yup. I think they have desperation setting in. They know they have to have total control over what people see/hear, because their arguments don't hold water.

    AJ talks about a lot of crazy stuff, but for the most part he's actually pretty awesome politically. He's a somewhat libertarian leaning constitution loving trad-con. Most of his show is stuff that one would expect any real deal conservative to be talking about.

  • Cyto||

    This is just the latest move from these players in their attempt to "deplatform" speech they disagree with.

    Gateway pundit had an article detailing how a list of like-minded conservative sites had seen their referrals from facebook et. al. plummet by over 90% since the election

    Way back in 2015 we were hearing about "shadow bans" of conservatives. They've been working on this for a long time - openly and proudly. They are doing the lord's work in making sure that dangerous lies are not heard.

  • Echospinner||

    I think he makes his money from the fake high priced nutrition supplements he hawks. That alone puts him into the lowest depths of humanity in my book. Stealing from the gullible.

    The infowars conspiracy crap is a gimmick to get attention and followers. He might believe some of it but he is just another huckster.

    This will probably hurt him but he is not going anywhere. People like him always find some slimepit to call home.

    The companies can ban him and he has every right to peddle his nonsense wherever else he wants.

  • Cyto||

    Jones' banishment comes as social media giants attempt to balance free speech, onlight civility, and the fight against "fake news."

    I'd love to see the bit where they are attempting to balance free speech with this other stuff.

    I'd say they are trying to balance their former commitment to being an open platform for free speech with their current desire to curtail political speech they disagree with. Claiming it is about "fake news" gives their spin way too much credit.

    If it was about "Fake News" we'd be seeing a lot of #BLM folks, Jezebel types and Maddow clones on the ban lists. The fact that nobody of Maxine Waters ilk is on the list speaks volumes. She's every bit as nutty as Jones, every bit as hate-spewing as any alt-right Nazi you can dredge up and is anything but civil.

  • Cyto||

    On the list of ironic juxtapositions, the same crowd that says the government can force you to work for a gay couple's wedding even if you find that religiously objectionable now says that it is not only acceptable, but is a moral imperative that big companies not allow people to express ideas they disagree with on their platform.

  • JeremyR||

    I think contrary to what you are saying, I think tech giants are trying to see how much they can censor and get away with.

  • Mike Laursen||

    Gosh, I was doing fine ignoring Alex Jones on my own without social media's help.

  • Echospinner||

    Well what is hate speach or incitement to violence? It is like defining pornography.

    I recall Facebook had some issues where they banned some depictions of famous classic nude art. There was a fuss about that and they eventually changed the policy.

    It is certainly fine for Facebook to maintain its brand and not allow porn or dicpics. Just as they do not want to be a platform for certain hate groups or those promoting violence. There is always a fuzzy line there.

  • D1Cali||

    It's all fun and games until the mob decides your speech is "hate."

  • Echospinner||

    Alex Jones is in a pickle for sure.

    He painted himself into a corner. The media he paid nothing for fired him.

    He is more than happy to sell you fake brain enhancing pills on his website to "help fund infowars".

  • No Yards Penalty||

    Long overdue.

  • Hamster of Doom||

    So long as one has no functional knowledge of history, the isn't alarming at all.

  • Miter Broller||

    Yay, now who is the next-most-intolerable-voice-we-don't-like? Let's get 'em!!!

  • Nardz||

    Over the last day or two, Alex Jones was censored. As Just Say'n notes, several anti-war people were banned from Twitter for criticizing the media's parroting of CIA talking points. Who will be excommunicated for wrongthink next? Not Sarah Jeong, as she's one of the inquisitors covering FOR the narrative, making sure uppity women in China know it is sacrilegious to question, criticize, or stand up for oneself (per John's link in another thread - post again please).
    There was also another violent demonstration in California, complete with sucker punches by masked soyboys and attempted arson. Charlie Kirk and Candace Owens were assaulted while eating breakfast.
    These are not uncoordinated, independent acts.

  • vek||

    1. The funny thing here is that AJ is NOT anti-gay, Muslim, etc. He is pro freedom of association with respect to gay stuff, which I guess makes him a Nazi or something... With Muslims, he simply accepts that there is a million percent higher chance that some Muslim immigrant is going to blow people up versus a Japanese immigrant or whatever... Not wrong, but also makes him a Nazi apparently... He wants our immigration laws enforced, but doesn't actually dislike non whites at all. Nazi!

    Also, he was married to a Jew and 1/2 his staff is Jewish! So REALLY not a super bigoted guy. AJ very much has never said anything beyond the pale on any of the issues they claim they banned him over.

    They just don't like his opinions.

    2. It is TERRIFYING that they all banned him in an obviously concerted effort. As always you might not like the guy, but his ability to speak his mind really should be protected. They're using him as a test case to see if they can get away with banning IMPORTANT people, since they've already banned tons of smaller people. AJ is HUGE. He probably makes 50 times as much money and has 1,000 more views than Reason, and just got completely shut down in a single day. If they can shit can somebody like him, who will be next?

    Tucker Carlson? He's more inflammatory on a lot of subjects than AJ is. Rush? Hannity? Will they even ban the cuck Ben Shapiro? Who friggin' knows. But make no mistake, this is a test case to see if they can get away with it. Scary shit.

  • AD-RtR/OS!||

    Yet, the NYT and Sarah Jeong exist everywhere on social media.

  • Uncle Jay||

    All thoughts contrary to Facebook, Twitter, etc. must be eliminated in order to save free speech.

  • jdgalt1||

    I predict a whole series of stories in Reason naively praising this action as a triumph of the free market, rather than itself being a hate campaign enabled by an (effective) monopoly that needs to be broken up under the antitrust laws, which is what it really is.

  • buybuydandavis||

    "Jones' banishment comes as social media giants attempt to balance free speech, onlight civility, and the fight against "fake news.""

    Fake news

    The banishment of InfoWars comes as the midterms approach and the Left won't make the mistake of letting the Right speak again.

    Because they can.

  • vek||

    Yup. They're showing how desperate they are to shut down right leaning speech before the mid terms. They know Trump would have never won without all the people on social media, and the independent press out there hustling for him.

  • Hank Phillips||

    Nixon's anti-libertarian subsidized media sho 'nuff prompted the voters to bring back the Comstock laws. Besides banning condoms, diaphragms and ALL other forms of birth control, prison terms were handed down for An Open Letter to Jesus. Ads for bras were banned as filth and "disloyal" speech or writing under President Grant's Reconstruction occupation was also good for up to a decade in the slammer. The Dems are likewise altruists, and must in principle either agree or denounce God's Own Prohibitionists as "not really" altruists or nationalsocialists. The Hayes-Tilden race came on the heels of the Comstock laws and the votes were counted by Republicans, and here we are again--full circle.

  • Food4thought||

    The "war" on hate speech and really, the war on anything that is an idea is so imbecilic that it reminds me of when ex president George Bush claimed America would wage a "war on terror". If an authority fights a war against an idea and attempts to purge thoughts from minds, it will find that every effort will cause that thing to multiply until things like hate and terror are omnipresent.

    Also, any person who actually watched an InfoWars broadcast and then says "Alex Jones, lizard people, aliens, merrrr" must be so reductionist about the content of his show that it can only be called a bald faced lie. Either that or they never watched the show. Conspiracy theories made up maybe 8% of the content on the show. It's the scapegoat that the unwashed masses will swallow as acceptable means of chaining them up without privacy or freedom.

    Do we really believe that the people are that stupid? That close to half of Americans sharing views similar to Alex Jones must just be "deplorables" and are otherwise morons? The population must be educated, no, indoctrinated that some ideas are bad (bad fpr the authority). Lets just stop thinking and allow our government (Silicon Valley, Wall Street) do that for us instead. How could that POSSIBLY go wrong??

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