Patterico's Pontifications

6/8/2019

“Conservatives” Demand Government Tell YouTube What Speech It Can Allow

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 11:48 am



So there’s a kerfuffle going on with YouTube, Steven Crowder, and a Vox writer named Carlos Maza.* Maza complained to YouTube about Crowder, and YouTube came back with a bunch of inconsistent and changing statements about their position, resulting in a decision to demonetize Crowder. He can still put up videos on YouTube, but he won’t get paid, which is likely a genuine financial hit.

This has caused conservatives to call for government intervention. This is wrong.

Let me start by emphasizing that, like the other big social media platforms, YouTube’s “policy” is inconsistent, and is often applied against conservatives in a distinctly one-sided manner. There are several reasons for this. Social media giants tend to be run by doctrinaire leftists. (The recent court decision allowing James Damore’s lawsuit against Google to go to discovery may shed light on Silicon Valley’s hostility to conservative viewpoints.) Also, they have too much content for them to monitor that content in a rational way, often leading to inconsistent bannings and suspensions that utterly ignore context and often mistake satire for genuine virulence. In their zeal to eliminate anything not politically correct, they’re even whitewashing history:

This absurd P.C. virus — and the resultant bias against conservatives — deserves pushback, in the form of loud and consistent criticism. And, if you’re so inclined, in the form of developing alternative platforms for free expression.

Given this insanity, I believe that social media should follow the rules that our country has set out for the government. The bigger the company, and the more users they have, the more free range for expression they should allow. The biggest ones should essentially allow anything that would be protected under the First Amendment. That’s my view, and while it’s not shared by everyone — Ken White held the opposite position, for example, in a debate I saw at Reason’s offices in Culver City — I think I’m right.

But the social media companies don’t have to agree with me.

And when they don’t, running to the central government is the wrong solution.

Everywhere I look, from the Kurt Schlichters of the world to the Ted Cruzes, conservative demagogues are suggesting that we should rely on government to decide what private companies must allow in terms of speech.

As conservatives have always said: “Government will fix the problem.”

Private companies engaged in providing a platform for speech are entitled to have the government stay the hell out of their decisionmaking. Because this is speech we’re talking about, and I don’t trust the government to regulate it.

Two mindless tropes are invoked as a justification for allowing government to decree what speech is and is not allowed.

The first is the mythical “publisher/platform” distinction. Swarms of people on Twitter think they have played the ultimate trump card when they declare something like this:

First, let’s be clear: that is not how things are now, and if you think otherwise, you’re wrong.

The article that Ken White links in that tweet makes the point that a lot of people are confused about this, including U.S. Senators:

One jaw-dropping moment during the Senate’s hearing on Tuesday came when Sen. Ted Cruz asked Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg, “Does Facebook consider itself a neutral public forum?” Unsatisfied by Zuckerberg’s response that Facebook is a “platform for all ideas,” Sen. Cruz continued, “Are you a First Amendment speaker expressing your views, or are you a neutral public forum allowing everyone to speak?”

After more back-and-forth, Sen. Cruz said, “The predicate for Section 230 immunity under the CDA is that you’re a neutral public forum. Do you consider yourself a neutral public forum, or are you engaged in political speech, which is your right under the First Amendment?” It was a baffling question. Sen. Cruz seemed to be suggesting, incorrectly, that Facebook had to make a choice between enjoying protections for free speech under the First Amendment and enjoying the additional protections that Section 230 offers online platforms.

Online platforms are within their First Amendment rights to moderate their online platforms however they like, and they’re additionally shielded by Section 230 for many types of liability for their users’ speech. It’s not one or the other. It’s both.

Indeed, one of the reasons why Congress first passed Section 230 was to enable online platforms to engage in good-faith community moderation without fear of taking on undue liability for their users’ posts. In two important early cases over Internet speech, courts allowed civil defamation claims against Prodigy but not against Compuserve; since Prodigy deleted some messages for “offensiveness” and “bad taste,” a court reasoned, it could be treated as a publisher and held liable for its users’ posts. Former Rep. Chris Cox recalls reading about the Prodigy opinion on an airplane and thinking that it was “surpassingly stupid.” That revelation led to Cox and then Rep. Ron Wyden introducing the Internet Freedom and Family Empowerment Act, which would later become Section 230.

The misconception that platforms can somehow lose Section 230 protections for moderating users’ posts has gotten a lot of airtime lately—even serving as the flawed premise of a recent Wired cover story. It’s puzzling that Sen. Cruz would misrepresent one of the most important laws protecting online speech—particularly just a few days after he and his Senate colleagues voted nearly unanimously to undermine that law. (For the record, it’s also puzzling that Zuckerberg claimed not to be familiar with Section 230 when Facebook was one of the largest Internet companies lobbying to undermine it.)

It’s unbelievable how pervasive this mistaken notion is. Evidently it’s part of our ubiquitous “the law is what I want it to be” legal philosophy.

So there is no “publisher/platform” distinction. Should there be? No.

Townhall is a publisher. Should Townhall have been allowed to fire me for criticizing Trump? I say: yes, absolutely. Do the demagogues who want to regulate YouTube disagree? Does Kurt Schlichter think the central government should issue a decree ordering Townhall to rehire me?

Am I allowed to ban commenters at my blog for espousing Nazi ideology? Or should the government order me to allow them to comment?

As Paula Bolyard says:

Ah, I hear you say, but we’re not saying the government should order you not to moderate, or order you not to demonetize opinions you dislike. We’re just saying that you should lose your Section 230 protections when you do! As the EFF article points out, however, that will lead to less free expression, not more:

It’s foolish to suggest that web platforms should lose their Section 230 protections for failing to align their moderation policies to an imaginary standard of political neutrality. Trying to legislate such a “neutrality” requirement for online platforms—besides being unworkable—would be unconstitutional under the First Amendment. In practice, creating additional hoops for platforms to jump through in order to maintain their Section 230 protections would almost certainly result in fewer opportunities to share controversial opinions online, not more: under Section 230, platforms devoted to niche interests and minority views can thrive.

The day the government takes away my Section 230 protection, and makes me liable for the stupid chuckleheaded things people say in my comment section … that’s the day I close comments. You can bet on that. How does that lead to greater free expression?

The second trope in defense of regulation is monopoly. People say: well, Patterico, we’re not saying you or Townhall have to open up your sites to everyone. But Twitter and YouTube are monopolies!

Ken White has a question for those of you who make this argument:

I have a problem with the mindset that says: sure, you can control your own Web site. But if it gets really popular, that’s when government gets to step in and tell me what to do. After all, we can’t have this freedom thing get out of control!

Some people are really wedded to monopoly law. I oppose it, as a free marketeer, believing that anything that resembles a monopoly tends to arise out of government interference. As Ludwig von Mises said:

It is a fact that with many commodities in many countries monopoly prices prevail, and moreover, some articles are sold at monopoly prices on the world market. However, almost all of these instances of monopoly prices are the outgrowth of government interference with business. They were not created by the interplay of the factors operating on a free market. They are not products of capitalism, but precisely of the endeavors to counteract the forces determining the height of the market prices. It is a distortion of fact to speak of monopoly capitalism. It would be more appropriate to speak of monopoly interventionism or of monopoly statism.

As Richard Ebeling explains:

[T]here may be a single seller in a market due to their ownership or control of a vital resources or raw material without which a product cannot be successfully produced and marketed. This was a hypothetical possibility pointed out by Austrian economists, Ludwig von Mises and Israel M. Kirzner.

However, if we allow time to pass, that is, if we look beyond the situation at a moment in time, we can see countervailing market forces that likely will be set in motion if there are potential profits to be made from selling this resource-specific product.

First, this situation would create incentives to prospect for and extract any possible alternative supplies of this resource or raw material outside the control of the “monopolist,” so competitors could enter his market at some point in the future.

Second, and more immediately as well as over time, if this is a profitable product, there would be incentives for competitors to market substitutes to his product out of alternative types of resources or raw materials outside of the monopolist’s control, and offer their substitute products at lower prices than the monopolist’s price. Thus, over time, competitive market forces would either eliminate or weaken even a “monopoly” position of this type.

The Austrian-born economist, Joseph A. Schumpeter, argued that the essence of the dynamic market economy is the innovative entrepreneurs who introduces the new, better, and improved products as well as new methods of production. To understand what Schumpeter called the competitive process of “creative destruction,” it is necessary to look beyond any seemingly “monopoly” situation at a moment in time, and take the longer historical perspective of the market as a dynamic process through time.

Textbook conceptions of “perfect competition” and “monopoly” are of little relevance or help, therefore, for understanding how markets actually work.

There has never been an example in history of a company preventing others from entering the market purely because the company was successful. Companies that temporarily seemed to be monopolies — IBM, Microsoft, etc. — ended up being displaced by nimbler competitors.

Frankly, I think it would be easier for a rival to YouTube to emerge than a rival to Twitter or Facebook. There is less need for an initial critical mass. If YouTube really gets out of control to the point where it actually bothers a lot of users, competitors will emerge.

The demagogues use the term “monopoly” to justify the government telling it what speech is and is not allowed. As conservatives have always done, we will trust the government, who will tell the “overbearingly” popular sites what speech is and is not allowed there. For the greater good.

And don’t worry, because the left will never grab that power and use it to conservatives’ detriment, using the power of the law backed by weapons, against which there is no competitive alternative.

Government for the win!

Once again: the fact that I hold these views does not mean I approve of YouTube’s conduct. As Ken White characterizes conservatives’ disingenuous arguments these days: “Not wanting government coercion to stop x = supporting x.” It’s not true. There’s a difference between thinking something is wrong, and thinking that the solution is to whine to the feds about it.

To the demoagogues who disagree with me, I say:

Your trust in government to fix the things that bother you is touching.

_____________________________________________

*If you want to read all the details of the feud, like was Steven Crowder rude to the guy (yes) or is Carlos Maza a good guy (no; he advocates violence, for example), you can do so elsewhere, because that’s not the point of this post. You could convince me that Steven Crowder is a prince of a guy or that Carlos Maza is the devil incarnate, and it would not change my opinion.

[Cross-posted at The Jury Talks Back.]

223 Responses to ““Conservatives” Demand Government Tell YouTube What Speech It Can Allow”

  1. Ding.

    Patterico (115b1f)

  2. Just remember: Carlos Maza is just one letter from Carlos MAGA. :)

    The Dana on Twitter (d1b882)

  3. “The day the government takes away my Section 230 protection, and makes me liable for the stupid chuckleheaded things people say in my comment section … that’s the day I close comments. You can bet on that. How does that lead to greater free expression?”

    A 230 repeal wouldn’t be a case of the government taking anything away. Keeping Section 230 is the government taking away a legal remedy from litigants. Government interfered when it enacted 230, and it’s bogus to frame it otherwise.

    Section 230 simply traded Compuserve/Prodigy ridiculousness for the ridiculousness of handing a megaphone to Jihadis with impunity. Repeal it and let the chips fall where they may.

    Munroe (13a1d5)

  4. Very good post. Thank you. Our “TV” Was once “owned” by ABC,CBS, and NBC. Then came Cable, then the internet. Like nature, free markets find a way.

    felipe (023cc9)

  5. So then, one might be tempted to ask, does YouTube pay no price for their censoring of conservatives? Well, I am actively looking to finally “cut the cable” and ditch my Frontier subscription, and one of the options I was strongly considering was to go with YouTube TV as a provider. I have now ruled that out. So sure, YouTube will probably get by without the $50/month that I would have paid for the service, but if enough of us do the same then they will eventually notice. No, there’s probably not a quick and easy way to make our displeasure known to them, but eventually they will get the message.

    YouTube, by the way, is one of the big companies supporting the Net Neutrality legislation, so I would have no problem with Sen. Cruz, Pres. Trump, et al. making it quite clear that it’s a dead letter issue once and for all. They should of course do this on principle, for all the reasons outlined by our host, but if Google/YouTube wants to believe that the opposition is based upon their censorship of conservatives, then let them believe just that.

    JVW (54fd0b)

  6. Just remember: Carlos Maza is just one letter from Carlos MAGA. :)
    The Dana on Twitter (d1b882) — 6/8/2019 @ 12:10 pm

    Or one letter from Carlos Raza

    felipe (023cc9)

  7. Myspace was huge until it wasn’t. The teenagers I know think facebook is for old people and hardly ever go on there. It will fade too one day. FOX News used not to exist. Now it does, love it or hate it.

    JRH (52aed3)

  8. When board members on credit card companies are gatekeepers (and coincidentally Obama administration officials) and we’ve seen how engineers for YouTube and Google and Instagram have outlined a strategy to deplatforming,

    Narciso (8cb601)

  9. A 230 repeal wouldn’t be a case of the government taking anything away. Keeping Section 230 is the government taking away a legal remedy from litigants. Government interfered when it enacted 230, and it’s bogus to frame it otherwise.

    Section 230 simply traded Compuserve/Prodigy ridiculousness for the ridiculousness of handing a megaphone to Jihadis with impunity. Repeal it and let the chips fall where they may.

    It would be the government taking away a defense I could raise in court if someone sued me because Munroe said something defamatory on my site.

    And due to that protection being removed, I would not allow you to comment here.

    So my Section 230 protection gives you the ability to speak here.

    Even though your comments add little value and never respond to the actual argument made.

    Hmm. Maybe they should repeal it after all.

    Patterico (115b1f)

  10. Were talking about how media monopolies are determining what is and cannot be expressed like the gdpr bill in the EU, ostensibly on privacy grounds, which they are insinuating over here

    Narciso (8cb601)

  11. I associate myself with our host’s remarks.

    On my own account, I would add: One need not rely upon the economists referenced and quoted by our host in order to dismiss, as silly, the “monopoly” argument. Under existing law since at least the mid-1980s, it is clear beyond peradventure that none of the big companies being complained of — Netflix, Amazon, Facebook, YouTube, whoeverTube — is remotely close to being a monopolist, or of attempting to monopolize within the meaning of Section 2 of the Sherman Act. Here’s a decent summary of the applicable law.

    Keep in mind, friends and neighbors, that there is a private right of action under Section 2: Thus, not only can the feds and state attorneys general sue for antitrust violations, but also consumers who claim to have been injured by violations of Section 2 may sue in federal court; if they win, their damages are tripled and their attorneys’ fees are paid.

    Yet these companies are not beset with very many, if any, serious lawsuits under Section 2. If YouTube, for example, is guilty of attempting to monopolize its relevant market (as if we could define that rationally), practically any lawyer in the country could find a client on whose behalf to file that suit. So why don’t they?

    Because antitrust lawyers will tell you that as a matter of both well-settled existing law and undisputed fact, these companies aren’t liable under Section 2 — and it is indeed so very clear that lawyers would be inviting sanctions under Rule 11 of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure for signing a frivolous pleading.

    Now, of course, Congress could, in theory, override some existing court precedent and buff up Section 2 so that it reached these big companies just for being … big. But I don’t see that getting through Congress, at least not yet.

    Beldar (fa637a)

  12. Did Felipe and Dana of the sentence diagram cross-concern troll each other?

    urbanleftbehind (0daf23)

  13. Mr. Patterico, you’re of course free to moderate or ban me for any reason, with or without 230.

    I responded directly to the thrust of the post and the argument made regarding 230. But, you are certainly free to allege otherwise, without details, since it’s your blog.

    Munroe (ea46a3)

  14. With this Congress, with pasionaria ocasio cortrz?

    Narciso (8cb601)

  15. This has a scent of desperation from entrenched management. The product isn’t selling anymore, so blame the distribution network, perhaps modernize the packaging with ‘new and improved’ slogans and hire fresh-faced spokespersons to appeal to changing demographics. It can’t be the marketplace has tired of our product after all these years, could it.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  16. If conservatives can’t form their own youtube and must leach off liberal sites this shows the weakness of conservatives. Gab is still up.

    lany (7d1670)

  17. LIbertarian conservatives oppose government interference when they don’t want it and support it when they do. I think this is called hypocrisy.

    lany (7d1670)

  18. Until the credit card companies cut them off, or these gatekeepers like Carlos meza, or that Winston Smith fellow at wikipedia.

    Narciso (c1f971)

  19. I think the problem is that youtube is acting as two different types of providers and pretending they are only acting as one. The portion of the site that is non-monetized videos, I would say is definitely a platform. OTOH, the monetized portion has gone back and forth. 10ish? years ago, they only approved certain channels or types of channels or channels with particular connection to be monetizable, and I would say that at that time they were acting as a publisher for monetized videos. Then they changed and pretty much let anyone put up monetized videos, which I would say means they were a platform for both non-monetized and monetized videos. Then, however, adpocolypse happened and they began sort of censoring monetized videos again, which I think makes that part of them a publisher. However, they don’t want to hire enough staff to actually review enough videos, so they don’t want to officially be counted as a publisher because it’s too expensive but they don’t want to take the reins off and go back to just being a platform because they might lose ad revenue due to objectionable content and again, they feel like that’s too expensive. Obviously companies don’t want to increase their expensive, so they will avoid having to act fully within one or the other realm as long as possible.

    Nic (896fdf)

  20. *expenses

    Nic (896fdf)

  21. Consider the two minute hate against linda fairstein, from Netflix, whose on the board there, to social media, to her publisher, I know she must have committed some thought crime or actual crime,

    narciso (d1f714)

  22. Mr. Patterico, you’re of course free to moderate or ban me for any reason, with or without 230.

    I responded directly to the thrust of the post and the argument made regarding 230. But, you are certainly free to allege otherwise, without details, since it’s your blog.

    You responded to the argument that I would be strongly incentivized to close comments if my protection were repealed?

    Patterico (115b1f)

  23. We tell Corporations to do all kinds of things. Don’t discriminate based on race, sex, national origins, sexual orientation. Among other things. And if they don’t have X number of minorities in various positions, they’d better have a damn good reason. Or they’re looking at a lawsuit from the DoJ.

    But deplatforming Conservatives? Well, hey “Free Market” AND we don’t want to disrupt “Capitalism”, because otherwise – we’ll all die of hunger. Or something. So, if a bunch of Leftists gain control of Youtube, Google, Facebook, Hollywood, etc. Well that’s A-OK. We don’t want to REGULATE them. ’cause “FREE MARKET”.

    Even though its not a “FREE MARKET”. Needless to say, if Facebook, Google, Hollywood, Youtube, were censoring Leftists, everyone would be screaming “CENSORSHIP” – and some Left-wing Judge would come up with some “Constitutional Right” that would force “Conservative Social Media (Fantasy version)” to back down.

    rcocean (1a839e)

  24. The Never-trumpers never change. They never let their Grand Principles get in the way of reality. If you don’t care about Conservatism succeeding in the real world- but only about proclaiming your Grand Principles, no matter what. Then why even write about politics? Just talk about your Grand Principles. And forget the real world or how it plays out.

    rcocean (1a839e)

  25. I’m just glad that our Youtube masters are ONLY Going after Nazis. They would NEVER go after real conservatives. Or try to censor History that doesn’t fit their left-wing beliefs. Because we all know those anonymous people at Youtube are the smartest, bravest, warmest, most wonderful people -EVER. And they’ll never censor the Never Trumpers because…ah.. just because.

    rcocean (1a839e)

  26. @4. Not quite. The public owned the airwaves and access to same by the corporate broadcasters who survived and thrived [remember DuMont?] was obtained through limited licensing which required renewals and content was ‘regulated’ — “standards and practices” and so forth… Lucy and Desi and Rob and Laura slept in separate beds for a reason, you know; and broadcast television was free— all you had to do was purchase a receiver and have an antenna. You pay for access to cable, once thought to be an absurd notion– who’d pay for TV?!?! Once upon a time, there was the Fairness Doctrine, too.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  27. I’m just glad that our Youtube masters are ONLY Going after Nazis. They would NEVER go after real conservatives. Or try to censor History that doesn’t fit their left-wing beliefs. Because we all know those anonymous people at Youtube are the smartest, bravest, warmest, most wonderful people -EVER. And they’ll never censor the Never Trumpers because…ah.. just because

    If you think you are parodying *my* opinion, you are illiterate. I know it was a long post, but the part you have wrong came very early.

    Patterico (92c044)

  28. Popehat’s nonsensical remarks have already been disproven and I can show how in just one word: E-Harmony.

    Leftists continue to deplatform conserveratives. Too many on the right support their right to do so.

    NJRob (4d595c)

  29. @ rcocean, who wrote (#23):

    Even though its not a “FREE MARKET”.

    Please tell us the last time anyone — in government, or in private industry — forced you to use YouTube.

    Beldar (fa637a)

  30. The Never-trumpers never change. They never let their Grand Principles get in the way of reality. If you don’t care about Conservatism succeeding in the real world- but only about proclaiming your Grand Principles, no matter what. Then why even write about politics? Just talk about your Grand Principles. And forget the real world or how it plays out

    These words could come out of the mouth of any leftist supporting unconstitutional big-government AOC style actions. Just substitute “old-style Democrats” for “Never-Trumpers” and “progressivism” for “Conservatism.”

    You guys are positively proud about lacking principle. It’s actually a feature to you rather than a bug.

    Patterico (92c044)

  31. @28 Crowder didn’t get deplatformed, he got demonetized. He can continue posting videos on youtube and exercising his free speech, he just can’t get paid for them right now.

    Nic (896fdf)

  32. that’s the next step, how about Instagram, snapchat, telegram,

    the difference is republican will debate on a head of a pin like the filibuster, then leftists like reid will do it, this is why it was dangerous to give them any authority,

    narciso (d1f714)

  33. 30.

    You guys are positively proud about lacking principle. It’s actually a feature to you rather than a bug.

    Well yeah, Pat. That’s how Trump won. And that’s how he’ll win again in 2020 (without my vote). The American body politic is rotting from the inside out, and Trump is a symptom of a far larger systemic disease.

    Gryph (08c844)

  34. Uh huh. How’d that work out for Reid? *cough*Supreme Court*cough*

    There is no constitutional right to be paid for opining.

    Nic (896fdf)

  35. Crowder didn’t get deplatformed, he got demonetized. He can continue posting videos on youtube and exercising his free speech, he just can’t get paid for them right now.

    Nic (896fdf) — 6/8/2019 @ 2:55 pm

    I didn’t say a word about Crowder.

    NJRob (4d595c)

  36. You guys are positively proud about lacking principle. It’s actually a feature to you rather than a bug.

    They worship a jealous god.

    Dave (1bb933)

  37. Often talked about this w/media colleagues back in the day. Development of web media platforms- social or otherwise- and the spurts and growth of the technologies which support them [and in effect regulate that growth by the nature of the advances themselves] in the medium at hand brought to mind parellels of the early ‘wild west’ days of broadcast radio, before regulation. standardization and organization took root. The era when crystal set receivers could be built out of oatmeal box kits, before individual stations were linked by a ‘network'; airwaves licensed and assigned frequencies; coordinated and when a hodgepodge of individuals could be their own ‘broadcasters’ w/a simple transmitter- a la an individual website today. Suspect, eventually, the web will evolve and be similarly standardized, with the technology ‘regulating’ that organization. Think about it– the practical internet as we know it has only really been around for 20 or 25 years or so. Assigning access speed’ via IP is already a method of regulating. What emerges will be more complex due to the merging of the various mediums but in a way, the days of the ‘Red Network’ and the ‘Blue Network’- a reference to radio times, is upon us.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  38. 34. Hence why Youtube isn’t in legal trouble. At best, their rather uneven application of unclear policies is ethically suspect.

    Gryph (08c844)

  39. @ Nic (#31): Of course Crowder can get paid for his videos. There are alternatives to YouTube — here’s a list of 15, took me literally 3 seconds to find on Google (or Duckduckgo or Bing). YouTube has no monopoly, nor anything close to a monopoly. Entry barriers are ridiculously low in this entire industry; dominant players wax, wane, and disappear in a matter of months. For that matter, Crowder could set up his own website — the talent’s available for hire by the hour, the hardware can be assembled off the shelf, the whole setup is a one-day day gig — that Crowder can monetize to his own delight. Can he do it as efficiently as YouTube? I dunno — how smart is Crowder? If he’s not smart enough to be competitive, that’s hardly YouTube’s fault.

    Beldar (fa637a)

  40. 37. The government will attempt such regulation; of that, I have no doubt. But they may find it problematic due to the fundamental nature of the internet as a network of networks.

    Gryph (08c844)

  41. Popehat’s nonsensical remarks have already been disproven and I can show how in just one word: E-Harmony.

    It will take more than one word for me, because I don’t know which of Popehat’s remarks you’re talking about, or what you are referencing with the E-Harmony thing. I did a quick search and it was not immediately obvious to me, so if you want me to understand your point, you’ll have to make an argument.

    Leftists continue to deplatform conserveratives. Too many on the right support their right to do so.

    I wrote a post on this. Hold on, I’ll find you the link — oh, wait, looks like it’s this very post. The one you’re commenting on.

    Other than simply declaring my position wrong, do you have an actual argument in response to the things I took a lot of time to put into a coherent set of arguments?

    Patterico (115b1f)

  42. just an example, what happened in new Zealand is more on point, even though the populace has proven resistant to some of Jacinda (a tool of the Chinese btw) more extreme measures,

    narciso (d1f714)

  43. As it happened, it took me about another 10 seconds to confirm that Crowder already has a website, LouderWithCrowder.com, through which he peddles coffee mugs & tea shirts, and on which he posts his own videos.

    Beldar (fa637a)

  44. @40. As noted, it will be complex, but likely inevitable- at least for the ‘higher end’ product. But the ‘regulation’ now is still dictated more by the development of the technology than anything else. Back in the day, once base radio and TV tech was ‘standardized’ [a monochrome TV from 1960 could operate in 2000] – programing flourished and content ruled Trendex reading advertisers. Hence, so many frigging westerns. 😉

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  45. I think it was horrible that ABC took Rosanne off the air and if Mr. Donald the President also known as Trump was a strong President he would have made ABC run her show and sell commercials and split the money with her because he is the chief law enforcement officer of the United States and it’s his job to protect Roseanne’s First Amendment rights and besides she is a big supporter of Mr. Donald the President also known as Trump except when she sometimes goes on a diet but that’s not very often and anyway John Goodman always makes up the difference.

    nk (dbc370)

  46. PS I’d rather watch clips of Rodney Dangerfield’s stand-up routine. Can we get a law to make YouTube post more?

    nk (dbc370)

  47. We don’t live in a strictly libertarian society. Businesses can’t just do whatever they want. They should (within reason), but that’s not the standard.

    If Walmart kicked me out of their store for supposedly violating their rules but they let other offenders stay, I won’t hesitate to get the government involved if I have to. If they kicked me out because I’m not white, then that’s obviously a violation of federal law.

    I don’t want the government to regulate speech. But I would support the government enforcing certain standards on social media TOS so content creators aren’t screwed by public pressure or loose interpretation of TOS.

    People earn a living on Youtube. They commit hours and resources on making videos. If someone uploads hundreds of video on their channel and they’re not taken down for 3,4 years, he or she has reasonable expectation that their content met Google’s standard. Now imagine all of them demonetized one day out of the blue and you don’t quite understand why. You have to go through everything to make edits or even delete them. Megan Fox at PJmedia said her content was demonetized despite having no racist or derogatory language.

    Youtube isn’t a movie studio that green lights a dozen projects. A gazillion people upload things at youtube, so algorithms scan videos. That was obviously going to be a problem somewhere down the road. It’s up to Google to ensure that educational video with Nazi imagery isn’t taken down. If they don’t want to, then maybe the government can get involved. They make ads on views and users provide that.

    lee (b56b65)

  48. 44. I didn’t say anything about whether it would be complex. I said it would be difficult and may be impossible in the end.

    Gryph (08c844)

  49. “I did a quick search and it was not immediately obvious to me”

    I searched Google and only found more recent articles, then I broke out of my filter bubble and used DuckDuckGo to find something much more relevant, and by those libertarians you like so much:

    In a settlement with the New Jersey Attorney General’s Office, the online dating service eHarmony, until now limited to heterosexuals, has agreed to start matching men with men and women with women. The deal resolves a complaint by a gay man who claimed that eHarmony’s failure to accommodate homosexuals violated New Jersey’s Law Against Discrimination. eHarmony’s lawyer said it believed the complaint “resulted from an unfair characterization of our business” but settled because “litigation outcomes can be unpredictable.” (Isn’t that the main reason anyone settles a lawsuit?) The company’s new service for gay singles, Compatiblepartners.net, may also resolve similar litigation in California.

    I’ve never bought the argument that gay marriage—i.e., the government’s evenhanded recognition of relationships between couples, without regard to sexual orientation—is a way of forcing “the gay agenda” onto people who object to it. But this coerced agreement, compelling a private business to provide a service it did not want to provide, certainly is. As Michelle Malkin notes, “this case is akin to a meat-eater suing a vegetarian restaurant for not offering him a ribeye or a female patient suing a vasectomy doctor for not providing her hysterectomy services.”

    Not that hard to find…if you knew where and how to look. Perhaps you’re still stuck in the Google automated search filter bubble and you haven’t realized that your own search is being affected? Google DOES serve as essentially a snap-in search function for just about every major site on the Net, after all, so one or two radical leftists in high places can easily shape casual information acquisition for thousands to millions of people at once.

    It seems that the law is, after all, only what the biggest and most well-funded bullies say it is.

    Gadfly (70c9cc)

  50. Not that hard to find…if you knew where and how to look. Perhaps you’re still stuck in the Google automated search filter bubble and you haven’t realized that your own search is being affected? Google DOES serve as essentially a snap-in search function for just about every major site on the Net, after all, so one or two radical leftists in high places can easily shape casual information acquisition for thousands to millions of people at once.

    Easier explanation. I didn’t care that much. If NJRob or someone else wanted to explain what it is, they could.

    I’m against this, because I am consistently against forced association of all kinds. I don’t want bakers forced to make cakes, online dating services forced to match people they don’t like, or YouTube forced to pay people they don’t like.

    Folks like you, on the other hand, have no consistent principle.

    Patterico (115b1f)

  51. Gadfly (70c9cc) — 6/8/2019 @ 4:03 pm

    So your refutation is that a protected class was…protected? Are conservatives a protected class? Is any political affiliation? I’ll answer that, no. Hence, that argument is, as is obvious on it’s face, invalid.

    Colonel Klink (Ret) (6e7a1c)

  52. Meh! I know the case. eHarmony caved. Did not fight. The owner later regretted letting New Jersey bluff him like that.

    Never plead guilty!

    nk (dbc370)

  53. @39 Yes, sorry, I was imprecise, he can’t get paid for it directly by youtube right now. He could also still stay on youtube and get paid directly by his audience if they felt he was worth it.

    Nic (896fdf)

  54. @ Gadfly, who wrote (#49):

    It seems that the law is, after all, only what the biggest and most well-funded bullies say it is.

    What law do you have in mind? Be very specific. Let’s get the shape of this proposition, and then — let’s test it.

    Beldar (fa637a)

  55. Meh! I know the case. eHarmony caved. Did not fight. The owner later regretted letting New Jersey bluff him like that.

    Never plead guilty!

    EHarmony was probably right under the law, but with their clientele, the PR was probably bad, so they settled and created a fork that allows more people to pay them money. The argument was at least with a recognized protected class under New Jersey law. Plus, it’s EHarmony’s right as a private company to cave.

    When political affiliation becomes a protected class, I’m interested, especially in how that would happen. Until then, trying to use monopoly powers, the 1st amendment, the 4th…the 21st, or however trying to back into an argument, I’m bored with the argument, it’s lazy and patently absurd.

    Colonel Klink (Ret) (6e7a1c)

  56. They rarely tip their hand this obviously:

    http://www.informationliberation.com/?id=60324

    Narciso (c1f971)

  57. Even as someone who isn’t a conservative, I find it heartening that conservatives *want* to be on twitter and facebook. It shows that for whatever reason, they want to be heard and want to be part of the conversation, however ugly and volatile it may be. If social media execs are smart they will want conservatives there too. Without ideological diversity it’s going to get very boring very fast. (which may be why no one likes Gab).

    JRH (52aed3)

  58. If you think you are parodying *my* opinion, you are illiterate. I know it was a long post, but the part you have wrong came very early.

    Actually, I wasn’t. If I was, I would’ve said so specifically. I appreciate the fact that you spell out your positions with adequate support – as oppose to other non-fans of Trump.

    rcocean (1a839e)

  59. “You responded to the argument that I would be strongly incentivized to close comments if my protection were repealed?”
    Patterico (115b1f) — 6/8/2019 @ 2:04 pm

    I did.

    Regarding 230: “Repeal it and let the chips fall where they may.” I thought the meaning would be clear. If you choose to close comments, then so be it.

    Was there some kind of Free Expression Dark Age before 230?

    Munroe (fe1e3d)

  60. You guys are positively proud about lacking principle. It’s actually a feature to you rather than a bug.

    No, I’m proud about wanting real-life results, that are conservative.

    During the Cold War, I could have stayed true to my “Grand principle” of being against: foreign aid, allying ourselves with authoritarian regimes, fighting wars not in our national interest, and not interfering in other countries affairs. I put aside those “Grand Principles” because defeating the USSR aka “The Evil Empire” required it. And the world is much better place because of it.

    rcocean (1a839e)

  61. 60. You aren’t getting “real-life results,” conservative or otherwise, from Donald J. Trump. What you are getting is an egotistical reality TV star who is an expert at getting his fans to eat his crap sandwiches.

    Gryph (08c844)

  62. The youtube censorship problem goes well beyond the Trumper vs. Non-Trumper split. The Right simply will not organize and fight for each other. This goes all the way back to when I first started paying attention when Reagan was President.

    Google/Youtube/Facebook will pick us off one by one. They will expand the definition of “Hate Speech” until everyone to the Right of Hillary is said to be “full of “hate”. If they haven’t gotten around to Bill Kristol and his crowd its only because they feel he’s harmless or helping them.

    If I told you 20 years ago that a Baker refusing to bake Gay Wedding Cake would be harassed and accused of being full of “Hate” – you would’ve laughed at me. 5 years from now, this blog – the least harmful blog ever – may be shut down because some leftist decides its “full of hate”. After all, what is “hate”? Its whatever they want it to mean.

    rcocean (1a839e)

  63. If I cared enough about it, I’d support a group that would do what FIRE does for college campuses, that is, enlist that group to sue Twitter, YouTube and Facebook to open access to conservative points of view for those conservatives who are shut out, but not to shut down liberal extremists. It is not conservative to exhort the government to force a company to keep a conservative’s platform.

    Paul Montagu (c72b20)

  64. @48. A descriptive phrase ‘a network of networks’ sounds reasonably complex. As is the human nervous system. Still, China, for instance, manages elements of the ‘difficulty’ of selectively blocking/editing and so forth so ‘impossibility’ doesn’t seem all that remote— merely, ‘complex.’ Just as certain cable television platforms selectively ‘edit’ by slightly speeding up broadcast content or editing frames of programming to squeeze in more commercial time and edit/screen out naughty words and scenes.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  65. Folks like you, on the other hand, have no consistent principle.

    Patterico (115b1f) — 6/8/2019 @ 4:17 pm

    No. I support Reagan’s Mutually Assured Destruction agreement. If only one side suffers from a method, there’s no reason for the other side to stop. There aren’t Christians on the left who know what they are doing is morally wrong. They’re morally bankrupt.

    NJRob (0e0c53)

  66. “So your refutation is that a protected class was…protected? Are conservatives a protected class? Is any political affiliation? I’ll answer that, no.”

    That had nothing to do with the argument but…It sounds like you’re ham-handedly trying to say “When your religious beliefs are inconvenient, they’ll be reinterpreted as being based on political affiliation or some other factor that isn’t part of a currently ‘protected class'”.

    I see you know how to speak power to truth!

    And when the protection for religion conflicts with the protection for ‘sexual orientation’, which factor supersedes?

    Stray Dog (5a6cca)

  67. In Canada, our neighbor to the north, a 7/2 court decided Christian religious construction was not in keeping with diversity and hence dissalowed.

    Narciso (fdec5c)

  68. @ rcocean: Perhaps you missed my question for you in #29 above. Or perhaps you saw it, and decided not to bother answering.

    So I will withdraw the question, and instead simply point out to you, rcocean, that nobody makes you, or anyone else, use YouTube.

    Beldar (fa637a)

  69. @60

    Habeus Corpus by Honest Abe.

    Yea sure – you live in a better world.

    Let’s dole out foreign aid like it’s candy to get them thar for-in-ers on our side.

    If ya’ gotta buy ’em off (aka TheSurge) what’s the point if it’s just a welfare payment?

    I couldn’t care less if the entire world was Communist and the USA was as free as a bird.

    But hey, we’re winning so much that yer friggin’ bored of it by now…

    Why do you keep arguing so hard if you’re bored of winning? Just sit back and count the stacks …

    MasterBaker (bcae7b)

  70. That had nothing to do with the argument but…It sounds like you’re ham-handedly trying to say “When your religious beliefs are inconvenient, they’ll be reinterpreted as being based on political affiliation or some other factor that isn’t part of a currently ‘protected class’”.

    Religion is a protected class, political affiliation is not. Like being a Cub’s fan. None of this is difficult, except if you’re arguing that the 1st amendment means something different than it’s words say, and that he 4th amendment doesn’t define private property rights.

    Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, are not government entities, they are private companies, so they are not infringing on the 1st amendment.

    If you want to argue that they may be in violation of their ToS, then go ahead, although their ToS also include an ability to change it at any time, so good luck with that.

    Colonel Klink (Ret) (6e7a1c)

  71. OK, let’s suppose that, in support of YouTube and the others demonetizing and deplatforming people whose opinions they don’t like, what would happen if someone at the electric company thought that someone like Jim Hoft was posting things which were actively harmful, and deplatformed Gateway Pundit by cutting off electric service to Mr Hoft’s residence, to prevent him from accessing this internet thingy that Al Gore invented.

    Everyone would say, “Whoa, they can’t do that, because electric service is a public utility, even if some electric companies are privately owned corporations.” The same thing would be said if the local cable company cut off Mr Hoft’s internet service.

    Now, this is where I veer off into the weeds. Even though I have said that the solution for Twitter, Facebook and YouTube censoring conservatives is for other people to develop their own social media platforms in competition, I can easily see where Twitter, Facebook and YouTube have become so large that they could be considered public utilities. The potential for government mischief here is tremendous.

    The realistic Dana (d1b882)

  72. Mr. VPN, whom I suspect to be a Soros-paid false flag, is profligate with his noms, today. Gadfly, Stray Dog, and MasterBaker all in one day.

    nk (dbc370)

  73. OK, let’s suppose that, in support of YouTube and the others demonetizing and deplatforming people whose opinions they don’t like, what would happen if someone at the electric company thought that someone like Jim Hoft was posting things which were actively harmful, and deplatformed Gateway Pundit by cutting off electric service to Mr Hoft’s residence, to prevent him from accessing this internet thingy that Al Gore invented.

    Let’s suppose big blue aliens fly down and give everyone pancakes. Supposing a thing that doesn’t exist, as a thing that does, is not an argument.

    Colonel Klink (Ret) (6e7a1c)

  74. Amazon first, please, realistic Dana. It is a purely commercial enterprise; any First Amendment concerns go the other way since it has such control over the book market; and by putting so many other retailers out of business, it has become a necessity instead of merely a convenience to a lot of people.

    nk (dbc370)

  75. Twitter, Facebook, and YouTube are not utilities, Adjectival Dana. Anyone can compete effectively with any of the companies you mentioned. Not only do these companies not have any sort of natural monopoly, the entry barriers for new competitors are almost non-existent. You don’t have to have access to any of them to lead a perfectly normal and healthy life; in fact, some people deliberately shun them, as you’re free to do if you don’t like their terms of service or anything else about them.

    You pretending these companies are utilities doesn’t turn them into utilities, but it does tend to show you don’t really know what that word actually means.

    Beldar (fa637a)

  76. @ nk (#74): Amazon isn’t a necessity. Not for anyone.

    Beldar (fa637a)

  77. “What law do you have in mind? Be very specific. Let’s get the shape of this proposition, and then — let’s test it.”

    Well, with enough money, bulli…lawyers, and Monster Ultra Energy, we can perform all the tests we want. Lobbyists and bull…activists make the world go round, man!

    New Age Retro Hippie (24ced3)

  78. @nk

    I’m outraged – you hurt my feelings.

    I’m as real as the Internet is.

    MasterBaker (bcae7b)

  79. “What law do you have in mind? Be very specific. Let’s get the shape of this proposition, and then — let’s test it.”

    Well, with enough money, bulli…lawyers, and Monster Ultra Energy, we can perform all the tests we want. Lobbyists and bull…activists make the world go round, man!

    So the answer is none in mind. Your argument seems to be “MOUTH NOISES

    Colonel Klink (Ret) (6e7a1c)

  80. “Twitter, Facebook, and YouTube are not utilities, Adjectival Dana. Anyone can compete effectively with any of the companies you mentioned.”

    The network effect and the high costs of data migration say NO in any realistic sense to that confident nonsense from someone obviously not familiar with the scaling problems inherent in the field.

    “Not only do these companies not have any sort of natural monopoly, the entry barriers for new competitors are almost non-existent.”

    Infrastructure, compliance, and support cost real time and real money. But that all pales in comparison to the cost of getting people to switch when they have sunk costs of years of data stored on Youtube, Facebook, and Twitter accounts-switching over is NOT simple and NOT cheap, and rest assured that the marketing and API guys will find ways to make switching to a new provider as difficult and time-consuming as possible.

    To repeat, your position is based on ignorance.

    “You don’t have to have access to any of them to lead a perfectly normal and healthy life;”

    Decades ago that may have been true. But the Internet is real and forever. Today, if your enemies can immediately communicate fake news about YOU to hundreds of thousands of people via the Weaponized Assault Press Arsenal that Youtube, Facebook, and Twitter provide, but your corrections using the very same tools end up throttled, hidden, rate-limited, and otherwise moderated past any reasonable standard, then sorry, your ‘perfectly normal and healthy life’ is lived only at the mercy of others.

    “in fact, some people deliberately shun them, as you’re free to do if you don’t like their terms of service or anything else about them.””

    Not using Twitter won’t stop Twitter people from targeting you, it only removes a powerful tool for fighting back against them to their audience of millions.

    Your position is nothing but ignorant victim-blaming and abject capitulation in the face of threats and is not and should not be held by reasonable people serious about keeping up in the First Amendment arms race.

    Fobby (e5114d)

  81. “First Amendment arms race”!?!?! Bwah-hah-hah-hah-ha.

    Beldar (fa637a)

  82. The troll or trolls are very active tonight. I resolve to stop feeding them, at least for tonight.

    Beldar (fa637a)

  83. Well Mastercard blocks transactions to patreon, chase follows suit, Citibank etc etc. Then Google or any other carrier says nay. You use magic in that instance?

    Narciso (fdec5c)

  84. Yeah, when I think “left wing organization”, the first thing that comes to mind is banks and credit card companies.

    In fact, I think the “leftness” of places like facebook and twitter are overstated. The folks at these companies trend more towards libertarian. However, their primary motivation is to make money, and the source of their money (advertisers) don’t want to be associated with bigots.

    Also, any unmoderated forum will turn into garbage. See 4chan for a prime example.

    Davethulhu (bc6fa6)

  85. But enough about the times and the post,

    Narciso (fdec5c)

  86. Patrick,
    You have a side site called somewhat ironically; The Jury Talks Back. But they don’t. Most people over there agree with you, which is what you are used to because you always win.
    That is not a slam on you. A friend of mine lives near you in Rolling Hills Estates and recently hosted a rehearsal dinner for a family friend who was marrying an LAPD homicide detective.
    He told my friend if she wanted out of jury duty, just tell them she did not believe an LAPD detective could be wrong. He went on to tell her that they are 100% sure before they bring charges and the prosecutor has an overwhelming chance of winning.

    So maybe it isn’t about being deplatformed but about rules about demonetizing being skewed.
    Lets say the hooTube demonetizes one platform but not the other. What happens to the money from ads and the clicks?
    Does hooTube keep it?

    steveg (354706)

  87. If so, that would be a be a great in for an anti-trust lawyer

    steveg (354706)

  88. #76
    Then I expect to see the host removing the amazon tab in 1,2,3,4….

    steveg (354706)

  89. They don’t put ads on demonetized videos because the idea is that companies don’t want to be associated with those videos, so no ad revenue.

    Nic (896fdf)

  90. That clears it up
    Thank you

    steveg (354706)

  91. you’re welcome!

    Nic (896fdf)

  92. Some companies don’t care about the details, they care about the eyeballs.
    But the host is right in the sense that it is their site and its got rules.

    If this site here got blocked for content by whomever Patrick pays, I would not be happy

    steveg (354706)

  93. I’m a flyweight at this. The host is a heavyweight. He is punching down and I am punching up.
    My friend, who is a legit heavy tells me that “if you ever hit me, and I find out about it, there’s gonna be trouble”

    steveg (354706)

  94. Decades ago that may have been true. But the Internet is real and forever. Today, if your enemies can immediately communicate fake news about YOU to hundreds of thousands of people via the Weaponized Assault Press Arsenal that Youtube, Facebook, and Twitter provide, but your corrections using the very same tools end up throttled, hidden, rate-limited, and otherwise moderated past any reasonable standard, then sorry, your ‘perfectly normal and healthy life’ is lived only at the mercy of others.

    I have had true cretins communicate fake news about me to lots of people through Google. To this day I deal with the fact that some people who are meeting me for the first time and Google me first may learn some of the craziest untrue “facts” about me — that I conspired to kill a voting rights activist, or that I deliberately put some poor women’s Social Security number on my site in an attempt to ruin her, or that I routinely use Twitter during work hours and this is “proven” by some analytics site, or that I have bought tens of thousands of fake Twitter followers — whatever other crazy and completely false crap they put out there. All 100% untrue, but all on Google.

    But aside from getting SWATted, I’ve had a pretty normal and healthy life. The Internet is not everything. Yes, I may have to take five minutes to explain some of the back story to, say, an inquisitive mother of a murder victim who has “met” my evil online persona before meeting me. But it’s OK. I don’t need the federal government to fix it.

    Patterico (115b1f)

  95. I have had true cretins communicate fake news about me to lots of people through Google. To this day I deal with the fact that some people who are meeting me for the first time and Google me first may learn some of the craziest untrue “facts” about me — that I conspired to kill a voting rights activist, or that I deliberately put some poor women’s Social Security number on my site in an attempt to ruin her, or that I routinely use Twitter during work hours and this is “proven” by some analytics site, or that I have bought tens of thousands of fake Twitter followers — whatever other crazy and completely false crap they put out there. All 100% untrue, but all on Google.

    But aside from getting SWATted, I’ve had a pretty normal and healthy life. The Internet is not everything. Yes, I may have to take five minutes to explain some of the back story to, say, an inquisitive mother of a murder victim who has “met” my evil online persona before meeting me. But it’s OK. I don’t need the federal government to fix it.

    Patterico (115b1f) — 6/8/2019 @ 11:17 pm

    To your credit. On some level, realizing you have enemies who are that twisted just means you stood for something good. I think a lot of people get that, on some level, with minimal explanation.

    If I recall the feds could have made a real difference in some ways, and at the end of the day they didn’t. Government isn’t a good solution to most kinds of liars.

    Dustin (6d7686)

  96. just show me the diapered pant suit ladies e-mails.

    mg (8cbc69)

  97. fwiw. Elizabeth Warren has called for the government to break up Facebook, Twitter, and Google. Bernie has called for facebook to be busted up.

    https://www.nytimes.com/2019/03/08/us/politics/elizabeth-warren-amazon.html

    https://www.politico.com/story/2019/05/15/sanders-backs-calls-to-break-up-facebook-1327881

    JRH (52aed3)

  98. And, breaking news, Kamala Harris says “there’s a conversation to be had” about it.

    JRH (52aed3)

  99. @97. The parellels to the long forgotten development and growth pangs of early broadcast radio suggest similar if not simpler struggles. We don’t think much about it now, but back in the day as it grew, it was the ‘internet’ of the times. The issues don’t necessarily repeat, but there is some rhyme to it. Case in point:

    ‘Concerned that NBC’s control of two national radio networks gave it too much power over the industry, in May 1941 the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) promulgated a rule designed to force NBC to divest one of them. RCA fought the divestiture order, but divided NBC into two companies in case an appeal was lost. The Blue network became the “NBC Blue Network, Inc.” and the NBC Red became “NBC Red Network, Inc.” Effective January 10, 1942, the two networks had their operations formally divorced, and the Blue Network was referred to on the air as either “Blue” or “Blue Network,” with its official corporate name being Blue Network Company, Inc. NBC Red, on the air, became known as simply NBC on September 1, 1942. The FCC order was ultimately upheld by the U.S Supreme Court, and on October 12, 1943, the Blue network was sold to candy magnate Edward J. Noble for $8,000,000, and renamed “The Blue Network, Inc.” In 1946 the name was changed to the American Broadcasting Company [ABC.] The “Red” network retained the NBC name, and remained under RCA ownership.” – source, wikiradio

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  100. That is very interesting. Apparently Roosevelt thought NBC and CBS were two of the “economic royalists” who had too much power and asked the FCC to break them up.

    JRH (52aed3)

  101. 95. At the end of the day, all government has, all government really is, is forceful coercion. Whatever else you think about Ayn Rand, she was right about that.

    Gryph (08c844)

  102. Mikhail Bulgakov, for one, had Jesus saying it to Pontius Pilate before Ayn Rand.

    Seen that verdict against Oberlin College for $11 million that might triple for calling a bakery racist?

    nk (9651fb)

  103. How well has that free market really worked in the regular press, is Brett timberlin actually accountable legally in any way, Carlos meza is just like one of those minions. Just like media matters and splc and cair, it doesn’t matter that one is going out of business, their red channels determine what does and doesn’t get funded get blocked get picketed.

    Narciso (fdec5c)

  104. “But it’s OK. I don’t need the federal government to fix it.”
    Patterico (115b1f) — 6/8/2019 @ 11:17 pm

    But you need the Section 230 fix the federal government provides?

    Munroe (5b7beb)

  105. May I take it that you approve of that so-called judge in New York telling Trump he cannot block hecklers on his Twitter?

    nk (9651fb)

  106. 105. Pat doesn’t need it. You do if you want to continue commenting here unless you can guarantee Pat won’t be held for anything potentially libelous you post. You’re here at his pleasure anyway, so I’d tread carefully if I were you.

    Gryph (08c844)

  107. “Yeah, when I think “left wing organization”, the first thing that comes to mind is banks and credit card companies.”

    Big banks take a stand against the gun industry – LA Times

    Chase Bank Denies Service to Conservatives – PJ Media

    harkin (470cbb)

  108. If you take over the culture and the universities which leads to the law, then there are few defenses, the star chamber mounted against Gibson last year, fairstein today who will be targeted tomorrow

    Narciso (d76f90)

  109. 105. Pat doesn’t need it. You do if you want to continue commenting here unless you can guarantee Pat won’t be held for anything potentially libelous you post. You’re here at his pleasure anyway, so I’d tread carefully if I were you.

    Exactly. I am not the one who benefits. Commenters are. No Section 230 protection, no commenters.

    You could say I benefit from having commenters, and it’s true. But not enough to expose myself to lawsuits for stupid things commenters say. Libel floods this comment section daily.

    Patterico (115b1f)

  110. “You could say I benefit from having commenters, and it’s true. But not enough to expose myself to lawsuits for stupid things commenters say.”
    Patterico (115b1f) — 6/9/2019 @ 8:17 am

    Yes, you do benefit. And, so do the platforms that are making a buck as publishers. I don’t put your blog in that category, but FB, Twitter and YouTube certainly are. Your post here is defending the federal safeguard that benefits them.

    Print publishers benefit enough with lawsuit exposure to stay in business. But internet publishers can’t?

    As I said before, let the chips fall where they may. Free market, and all that….

    Munroe (310010)

  111. Frankly, I think it would be easier for a rival to YouTube to emerge than a rival to Twitter or Facebook. There is less need for an initial critical mass. If YouTube really gets out of control to the point where it actually bothers a lot of users, competitors will emerge.

    Exactly. I am not the one who benefits. Commenters are. No Section 230 protection, no commenters. You could say I benefit from having commenters, and it’s true. But not enough to expose myself to lawsuits for stupid things commenters say. Libel floods this comment section daily.

    Patterico (115b1f) — 6/9/2019 @ 8:17 am

    And so, section 230 goes away…you restrict comments…and competitors emerge who are 1) better funded and or 2) more willing to allow commenters and defend against the attendant liabilities.

    Who says A must say B, Patterico. It seems that in your lock step rigidity to ‘principle’, you’ve forgotten one espoused by WFB Jr – “He who says A, must say B”

    Spurious Lartius (93eed4)

  112. Section 230 is not regulation but its opposite. Regulation tells you that you cannot do something, or must do something. Section 230 tells you that you need not worry about something.

    For that reason, big tech was fine with a measure that weakened it. Big tech can absorb the costs and risk. New entrants to the market cannot.

    If you support Schlichter-like “crushing regulation” you are playing into the hands of Big Tech.

    Patterico (b30750)

  113. A criminal mastermind who got out of jail thanks to false claim against Quayle who singer lapped up without missing a beat, who set himself up with a lavish non profit scam, whose minions target an officer of the law because he brought his crimes to light, who has a ready ear at every major paper, tell me which part I’m missing

    Narciso (d76f90)

  114. 111. Munroe, if you were gone tomorrow, I know I wouldn’t miss you and I really doubt that Pat would.

    112. I’m fairly certain that if comments were completely cut off on this blog, Pat wouldn’t shed a single tear for any of us. Might I also remind you and Munroe, Pat does not depend on this blog for a living. Competition in that sense is meaningless here, and why I continue to comment here while I have abandoned most commercial “conservative” blogs.

    Gryph (08c844)

  115. “Lack of oversight from Washington allowed these firms to grow to gargantuan size and consolidate their monopolistic control. Now they are taking over much of what’s left, from food delivery to finance, movies to space exploration. The message to everyone else? Move aside—we’re taking over.

    Financed by a small charmed circle of venture capitalists and private equity firms, these behemoths have employed their close political ties in Washington to avoid antitrust scrutiny that firms in less “sexy” industries would be hard-put to avoid. This has allowed, for instance, Facebook to buy up competitors like Instagram, WhatsApp and Oculus, and for Google to devour hundreds of firms, at times purchasing a new venture every week.

    As big donors to the Democratic Party and supporters of numerous politically correct causes, tech giants, led by Google, seemed at one point about to acquire the progressive left as well. But with the demise of corporate facilitator Hillary Clinton, the ascendant Bernie Sanders-Elizabeth Warren style populism now openly targets the oligarchs and favors their breakup. Progressives, at least those not dependent on oligarchal funding, increasingly also question their labor practices, which are resolutely anti-union and extraordinarily inegalitarian, and their ability to hoard cash while paying minimal or no taxes.

    Compounding their political jeopardy, the oligarchs also have managed to alienate the right, traditional defenders of property rights and capital. Some conservatives doggedly still defend them, but more have been alienated by the firms’ systematic bias against conservatives—often suspending their online presences, and even access to online credit.

    https://www.thedailybeast.com/the-resistance-we-need-the-trump-administration-gears-up-to-trust-bust-the-tech-giants?ref=home
    _

    harkin (470cbb)

  116. Because big tech like Hollywood and newspapers would rather losses than alter their message or allow a contrary one, scl cambridge analytica is an abject lesson

    Narciso (d76f90)

  117. The public square, where one would ideally be free to express unpopular views, is dominated by corporations who seem hell bent on stifling views they find abhorrent, but in fact are only, in most cases, abhorrent to the gatekeepers’ delicate sensibilities. Oh, I know how evil the deplorables be, of course. But the whole scheme to demonetize followed by deplatforming seems so very one sided. Oh, it’s the algorithm, the all knowing yet opaque algorithm.

    I have an idea: publish the source code Facebook/Twitter & etc. And every revision going forward. The operating philosophy at Twitter seems to be show me the Tweeter and I’ll show you the thought crime. And of course no one forces anyone to use these services. But show me other apps with the same reach and influence as Twitter. As Facebook. You cannot. They are monopolies. In the tech industry, this is a difficult truck to perform, but they have. Now that they have decided to become curators of content, they have opened a legal Pandora’s box. That they are now under the antitrust microscope, they have only themselves to blame.

    On another topic, I do wonder once they kick someone off if they purge that user’s data such that they no longer profit from it as the commodity it has become. Would I be wrong in thinking they have not? Hmmmm, this brings up what may be an interesting legal question, and grounds for a class action. That’s one way to skin the cat. I’d love to read the product of discovery. Just what does happen with said data, writ large?

    Bellman (560635)

  118. The public square, where one would ideally be free to express unpopular views, is dominated by corporations who seem hell bent on stifling views they find abhorrent, but in fact are only, in most cases, abhorrent to the gatekeepers’ delicate sensibilities. Oh, I know how evil the deplorables be, of course. But the whole scheme to demonetize followed by deplatforming seems so very one sided. Oh, it’s the algorithm, the all knowing yet opaque algorithm.

    So by the premise of your statement the public square you are speaking of doesn’t exist, it is a private square.

    Colonel Klink (Ret) (6e7a1c)

  119. Bellman wrote (#118):

    [S]how me other apps with the same reach and influence as Twitter. As Facebook. You cannot. They are monopolies.

    That’s not the test of what is and isn’t a monopoly, and only someone who has no clue what an actual monopoly is under Sherman section 2 could possibly say such a thing.

    You’re just wrong. You’re not even in the ballpark. You’re completely wrong. Wishing the law were what you want does not make it so.

    Beldar (fa637a)

  120. But hey, Bellman: Maybe I’m wrong. Why don’t you sue Facebook and Twitter for monopolization and attempt to monopolize, and let us know how heavily you’re sanctioned when your case is thrown out of court.

    Beldar (fa637a)

  121. (But I’m not wrong.)

    Beldar (fa637a)

  122. Bellman, you obviously haven’t bothered to ever actually read the Terms & Conditions under which Facebook permits its users to use its platform (boldface mine, underscore FB’s):

    Permission to use content you create and share: You own the content you create and share on Facebook and the other Facebook Products you use, and nothing in these Terms takes away the rights you have to your own content. You are free to share your content with anyone else, wherever you want. To provide our services, though, we need you to give us some legal permissions to use that content.

    Specifically, when you share, post, or upload content that is covered by intellectual property rights (like photos or videos) on or in connection with our Products, you grant us a non-exclusive, transferable, sub-licensable, royalty-free, and worldwide license to host, use, distribute, modify, run, copy, publicly perform or display, translate, and create derivative works of your content (consistent with your privacy and application settings). This means, for example, that if you share a photo on Facebook, you give us permission to store, copy, and share it with others (again, consistent with your settings) such as service providers that support our service or other Facebook Products you use.

    You can end this license any time by deleting your content or account. You should know that, for technical reasons, content you delete may persist for a limited period of time in backup copies (though it will not be visible to other users). In addition, content you delete may continue to appear if you have shared it with others and they have not deleted it.

    But hey, you certainly know everything that needs to be known about antitrust and IP law! Class actions, you say! Discovery!

    How about you start your own law firm? After all, if you’re right, you will have no trouble finding hundreds of thousands of like-minded people to gamble their fortunes against the likelihood of Rule 11 sanctions for frivolous pleadings.

    (But you’re not right.)

    Beldar (fa637a)

  123. I don’t agree with government telling the alphabet companies who to regulate online content. To me, that’s definitely inviting the camel into your tent.

    I do, however, think we need to discuss whether or not the alphabet companies are too big and deserves consideration to be broken up. I’m just not to clear what’s the line.

    Is Apple too big? Probably… but how do you break them up? Furthermore, you can see the writing on the wall that they’re going to expand the business by venturing into other businesses. Ie, consider if they bought Netflix and incorporated all their titles into their app ecosystem that’s available for all apple users… is that monopolitistic? I dunno. Just like I don’t know if it’s really kosher for Comcast (a cable provider) owning NBC (a massive content company).

    As for massive social media companies, such as Facebook/Twitter, I’m in Pat’s camp that these companies ought to recognize that the bigger they are, the more “public square” ish they become. I hope they recognize this and work towards applying 1st amendment principles, if for nothing else, to stave off government interventions.

    whembly (4605df)

  124. @100. The FCC of the era apparently did; and the Supreme Court upheld the FCC decision. OTOH it led to the creation of ABC Radio— which led to ABC Television, which gave us Walt Disney’s Mickey Mouse Club and to ABC Sports, which gave us Monday Night Football. All for free. So we have the Roosevelt Administration to thank for Annette Funicello filling out a sweater and Howard Cosell in our living rooms. 😉

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  125. “George of the Jungle” and “Rocky and Bullwinkle” too. I’m still watching those. On YouTube.

    nk (dbc370)

  126. @118 As a practical matter, I’ve never seen a code-fork (which is what you are talking about) get anywhere near as popular as the original site.

    Nic (896fdf)

  127. I do, however, think we need to discuss whether or not the alphabet companies are too big and deserves consideration to be broken up.

    No company should ever be broken up simply for being too big. Absent government handouts (which I oppose), companies get big by satisfying consumer desire at a price consumers are willing to pay. That’s a good thing, and companies that succeed at it should be allowed to get as big as they want — again, without government handouts, which again, I oppose.

    Patterico (115b1f)

  128. If your problem is the government handouts, oppose those, not the size of the company.

    Patterico (115b1f)

  129. (But I’m not wrong.)

    As Harry Shearer says: “Correct me if I’m wrong … but I’m not wrong, so shut up.”

    Patterico (115b1f)

  130. @124/128. If only the real world were as cut and dried. Reconnect w/t breakup of the Bell System back in Reagan days and the change in nickels, dimes, quarters and billions of dollars from it.

    Good, bad and ugly ‘argument ammo’ for the both of you:

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Breakup_of_the_Bell_System

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  131. Beldar misunderstood me:

    You pretending these companies are utilities doesn’t turn them into utilities, but it does tend to show you don’t really know what that word actually means.

    What I actually wrote was:

    I can easily see where Twitter, Facebook and YouTube have become so large that they could be considered public utilities.

    That isn’t how Beldar misunderstood me.

    It wasn’t that long ago that even the smallest businesses — diners, for instance — were defined as public accommodations for the government purpose of compelling such establishments to serve blacks. Certainly social media platforms are not currently considered utilities, but it doesn’t take that much imagination to see how they could be.

    The historian Dana (d1b882)

  132. It wasn’t that long ago that even the smallest businesses — diners, for instance — were defined as public accommodations for the government purpose of compelling such establishments to serve blacks.

    Please, elucidate us as to who would be the protected class in your argument? Who would the public accommodation be for?

    Certainly social media platforms are not currently considered utilities, but it doesn’t take that much imagination to see how they could be.

    Actually, it requires an enormous amount of bending of reality to imagine that. What would be the remedy be for the public, and to the private property owners that you are removing their rights to said property?

    Colonel Klink (Ret) (6e7a1c)

  133. “Section 230 is not regulation but its opposite. Regulation tells you that you cannot do something, or must do something. Section 230 tells you that you need not worry about something.”
    Patterico (b30750) — 6/9/2019 @ 8:41 am

    Unless you’re a modern day Richard Jewell, who is told he can’t sue these companies for libel. The worry just gets transferred to him.

    The government is stepping in and picking winners and losers. I thought we were against that sort of thing.

    Munroe (8e4fdb)

  134. I’m late to the game and sorry if this has been posted prior. That said, do any of you recall when the left was attempting to get the gov’t to control conservative radio? How would this be any different?

    Angelo (72492f)

  135. Unless you’re a modern day Richard Jewell, who is told he can’t sue these companies for libel. The worry just gets transferred to him.

    The government is stepping in and picking winners and losers. I thought we were against that sort of thing.

    The government is clarifying that the people responsible for libel are the ones who do the libeling. I have never been against that sort of thing.

    I object to interference in the MARKET, not to the government passing laws that limit people’s ability to sue. That is quite a different thing. You’re against tort reform of all sorts? Really?

    I favor anti-SLAPP motions. That is not picking market winners and losers. It is preventing plaintiffs from shutting down speech with frivolous lawsuits.

    I don’t think you understand the “picking winners and losers” argument, or really much about the free market at all.

    Patterico (115b1f)

  136. Adjectival Dana, now you’ve gone from utilities to public accommodations. You don’t know what the hell you’re talking about; you’re just making things up, almost wildly and at random. I renew my resolve to ignore you in the future.

    Beldar (fa637a)

  137. Let me put it this way, sir. You wrote:

    Certainly social media platforms are not currently considered utilities, but it doesn’t take that much imagination to see how they could be.

    This is a perfect example of someone showing not only a willingness, but an eagerness, to twist and distort clear language, to re-define at your whim meaningful terms that have legal definitions and make the difference between operating relatively freely and operating with extensive government regulation — just to get to the result you want.

    It’s dishonest. But we’ve had that discussion recently, haven’t we? If if it’s for “your team,” you aren’t bothered by dishonesty. What a case of Trumpty-Dumpty:

    “When I use a word,” Humpty Dumpty said, in rather a scornful tone, “it means just what I choose it to mean—neither more nor less.”

    “The question is,” said Alice, “whether you can make words mean so many different things.”

    “The question is,” said Humpty Dumpty, “which is to be master — that’s all.”

    Beldar (fa637a)

  138. Munroe wrote (#134):

    The government is stepping in and picking winners and losers. I thought we were against that sort of thing.

    I am against that sort of thing, and I can show you many, many comments I’ve left here and elsewhere online to the same effect.

    Can you point to one, post-Trump, where you’ve demonstrated that you’re against that sort of thing? I think it would have jumped out at me if I came across one, so I must have missed it — if such exist. I’m fairly confident that every word you’ve ever written here about tariffs, for example, is a glowing endorsement of government (meaning Trump) picking losers and winners.

    So educate us, please, with past examples of you criticizing the Trump administration for wanting to pick winners and losers. I hope you will prove me wrong.

    Failing that, how about an Ebola joke?

    Beldar (fa637a)

  139. “Can you point to one, post-Trump, where you’ve demonstrated that you’re against that sort of thing?”
    Beldar (fa637a) — 6/9/2019 @ 2:52 pm

    You mean like the umpteen times I’ve poked fun at anti-tariff and pro-free market professionals who enjoy the privileges of barriers to market in their chosen vocation (e.g., licensing.), wouldn’t have it any other way, and somehow don’t see any disconnect? Or, are tariffs the single solitary litmus test for being “against that sort of thing”? We just had a post here about professional licensing for manicurists — and, my, wasn’t it ridiculed?

    There are acceptable exceptions to the free market, national security being one. It can be argued, very unconvincingly perhaps, that tariffs are advancing national security concerns. What is the acceptable exception to free markets that makes a convincing argument for Section 230, professional licensing for certain jobs and not others, or any other exception you favor? I’d like to hear it.

    Munroe (1e6b2b)

  140. You should stick to Ebola jokes.

    Beldar (fa637a)

  141. Here again is the question you ignored, Munroe, so you could slide off sideways onto some other crackpot hobby horse:

    So educate us, please, with past examples of you criticizing the Trump administration for wanting to pick winners and losers.

    To be responsive, your answer should quote from your past comments here, and identify them by post, date & time.

    Beldar (fa637a)

  142. Somebody needs to do something about these one sided “Contracts” that we have to agree to use MS products, browsers, Amazon, Google, and anything online. Basically its agree to our 5 pages of legal gibberish written by our lawyers -to give us everything and you nothing – or don’t use our service.

    Usually the courts step when one side forces such one-sided contracts on another, but Social Media has cleverly taken the Left’s side in the culture war. And once you do that, you can do anything.

    rcocean (1a839e)

  143. The Government “Steps in” and demands Corporations obey worker safety laws, deal with unions, not discriminate based on race, national origin, etc., etc.

    The idea that the Government couldn’t “Step In” and force Youtube to give a reason for its banning AND not discriminate based on POLITICS – doesn’t seem that much different or worse than 100 other things.

    rcocean (1a839e)

  144. So there’s Rightie Worries over censoring content in a medium.   

    Ladies and Gentlemen, presenting former Republican National Committee Chairman and first president of the MPPDA of America, Will H. Hays:

    ‘First President of the Motion Picture Producers and Distributors Association of America, Will H. Hays had a distinguished career as a politician before that, most notably as Chairman of the Republican National Committee (1918-21) and as U.S. Postmaster General under Warren Harding (1921-22). As Postmaster General, he was an outspoken opponent of sending obscene materials through the mails. Thus, when Hollywood’s producers and studio heads decided to form their own watchdog organization after several major scandals during the early 1920’s (Arbuckle, Wallace Reed), they felt that Hays was the perfect man for the job. Beginning in 1922, and for more than two decades thereafter, it was a job that Hays took very seriously, and it reached its apex with the adoption of the so-called, highly restrictive Hays Code in 1934. By the late 1940’s, however, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that films were protected under the First Amendment, and Hays felt his power starting to slip. As American films went in new and different directions, the various restrictions in the Hays Code began to erode under Hays and his immediate successors, Joseph Breen, Eric Johnson, and Jack Valenti, the latter of whom essentially scrapped the Hays Code in 1967 in favor of the present-day rating system. For good or ill, Will Hays was a force to be reckoned with in the history of American films, and his influence is still being felt, and debated, today.’ -source- IMDb 

    The Production Code [aka the Hays Code] enumerated three “General Principles”:

    1. No picture shall be produced that will lower the moral standards of those who see it. Hence the sympathy of the audience should never be thrown to the side of crime, wrongdoing, evil or sin.

    2. Correct standards of life, subject only to the requirements of drama and entertainment, shall be presented.

    3. Law, natural or human, shall not be ridiculed, nor shall sympathy be created for its violation.

    Specific restrictions were spelled out as “Particular Applications” of these principles:

    -Nudity and suggestive dances were prohibited.

    -The ridicule of religion was forbidden, and ministers of religion were not to be represented as comic characters or villains.

    -The depiction of illegal drug use was forbidden, as well as the use of liquor, “when not required by the plot or for proper characterization.”

    -Methods of crime (e.g. safe-cracking, arson, smuggling) were not to be explicitly presented.

    -References to sex perversions such as homosexuality and venereal disease were forbidden, as were depictions of childbirth.

    -The language section banned various words and phrases that were considered to be offensive.

    -Murder scenes had to be filmed in a way that would discourage imitations in real life, and brutal killings could not be shown in detail.

    -“Revenge in modern times” was not to be justified.

    -The sanctity of marriage and the home had to be upheld.

    -“Pictures shall not infer that low forms of sex relationship are the accepted or common thing.”

    -Adultery and illicit sex, although recognized as sometimes necessary to the plot, could not be explicit or justified and were not supposed to be presented as an attractive option.

    -Portrayals of miscegenation were forbidden.

    -“Scenes of Passion” were not to be introduced when not essential to the plot.

    -“Excessive and lustful kissing” was to be avoided, along with any other treatment that might “stimulate the lower and baser element.

    -“The flag of the United States was to be treated respectfully, and the people and history of other nations were to be presented “fairly.”

    -“Vulgarity”, defined as “low, disgusting, unpleasant, though not necessarily evil, subjects” must be “subject to the dictates of good taste.”Capital punishment, “third-degree methods”, cruelty to children and animals, prostitution and surgical operations were to be handled with similar sensitivity.”

    Hays’ philosophy might best be summed up by a statement he reportedly made to a movie director: “When you make a woman cross her legs in the films, maybe you don’t need to see how she can cross them and stay within the law; but how low she can cross them and still be interesting”.- source, wikibio

    Just what this medium needed- more women in pantsuits.  😉

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Will_H._Hays

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Motion_Picture_Production_Code

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  145. Besides Youtube doesn’t operate in a “Free Market” – its a quasi monopoly. Its no more a Free Market than the 4 media Giants that control Television/Hollywood is the “Free Market”. To have a “Free Market” you need minimal barriers to entry and competitors that truly compete. None of which apply.

    rcocean (1a839e)

  146. Quit posting big blocks of text.

    rcocean (1a839e)

  147. It can’t happen here, Beldar?

    As I understand Net Neutrality it was “the principle that an internet service provider (ISP) has to provide access to all sites, content and applications at the same speed, under the same conditions without blocking or preferencing any content.” How big a step away is it from platforms the FCC deems “too be big to be unregulated”?

    nk (dbc370)

  148. “Protected classes” are an entirely different area of law, Herr Oberstrudelfresser.

    nk (dbc370)

  149. Besides Youtube doesn’t operate in a “Free Market” – its a quasi monopoly. Its no more a Free Market than the 4 media Giants that control Television/Hollywood is the “Free Market”. To have a “Free Market” you need minimal barriers to entry and competitors that truly compete. None of which apply

    What are the barriers to entry for competitors for YouTube?

    Patterico (b30750)

  150. “To be responsive, your answer should quote from your past comments here, and identify them by post, date & time.”
    Beldar (fa637a) — 6/9/2019 @ 3:39 pm

    No, to be responsive, I could explain why expressed opposition to tariffs as some kind of litmus test of your own making is not indicative of being “against that sort of thing”, meaning against the government picking winners and losers. And, I responded accordingly.

    With all do respect, and I do greatly respect you, you sidestepped my response.

    Munroe (cb3990)

  151. “You should stick to Ebola jokes.”
    Beldar (fa637a) — 6/9/2019 @ 3:33 pm

    Why are lawyers immune to Ebola?

    Professional courtesy.

    I’m here all week.

    Munroe (cb3990)

  152. “Protected classes” are an entirely different area of law, Herr Oberstrudelfresser.

    No, it isn’t, as the quote, below was specifically referencing access to diners in this case.

    Under the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and other federal anti-discrimination laws, a person may not be discriminated against based on any of the following:
    Age.

    Race.

    National origin.
    Religious beliefs.
    Gender.
    Disability.
    Pregnancy.
    Veteran status.

    It wasn’t that long ago that even the smallest businesses — diners, for instance — were defined as public accommodations for the government purpose of compelling such establishments to serve blacks.

    Please, elucidate us as to who would be the protected class in your argument? Who would the public accommodation be for?

    Colonel Klink (Ret) (6e7a1c)

  153. #119

    Well, you are correct, of course. The Internet is the public square, in theory. The social platforms were created and operated by private companies. Point taken.

    Bellman (560635)

  154. Hayes code was pretty clear and established, were talking about inconsistent applications of terms of service, aoc cannot be ridiculed, but death threats and degrading garbage can be aimed at conservatives.

    narciso (d1f714)

  155. What is the protected class for electricity into your home or business? The only people not “protected” are those not likely to pay their bill. Congress or your state legislature can pass the same law, either under Congress’s commerce power or the state’s plenary police power: “Anybody who can pay for YouTube gets YouTube.”

    nk (dbc370)

  156. I think the point Dana of the Adjectives was making was a rather simple and basic one: just as government could by a simple statute expand the meaning of “public accomodation”, so it could expand, if it wished, the meaning of “public utility”.

    Kishnevi (ca461e)

  157. What are the barriers to entry for competitors for YouTube

    YouTube is the biggest barrier to competing with Youtube.

    Isn’t there a point at which an entity grows so large that it can leverage its resources to effectively stifle any competition? By for instance putting a clause in its contracts that no one can advertise on Youtube if they advertise on a competitor, by contractually restricting all content uploaders to not upload content on competitors, etc? Not to mention the possibilities of manipulating regulation and litigation. Even if it files nuisance lawsuits, it will have lawyers and money to outlast the “little guy”.

    Such things won’t keep a potential competitor from trying to compete, but it would keep them from succeeding.

    Kishnevi (ca461e)

  158. I think the point Dana of the Adjectives was making was a rather simple and basic one: just as government could by a simple statute expand the meaning of “public accommodation”, so it could expand, if it wished, the meaning of “public utility”.

    You’d have to change the meaning of the Due Process clauses in the 5th and 14th amendments and the last 100 years of SCoTUS decisions, or add new protected class, and even then the likelihood would be teeny tiny that it would pass muster, as constitutional protections would probably override any argument about political affiliation being a class.

    Colonel Klink (Ret) (6e7a1c)

  159. @ Kish, who wrote (#157):

    just as government could by a simple statute expand the meaning of “public accommodation”, so it could expand, if it wished, the meaning of “public utility”.

    No doubt about it, that’s true. Government can do a lot of incredibly stupid things.

    But our government hasn’t done this yet. Until then, I prefer to live in the real world, in which Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Instagram, Google, Bing, etc., are neither monopolies or public utilities.

    Beldar (fa637a)

  160. Such things won’t keep a potential competitor from trying to compete, but it would keep them from succeeding.

    And we should mandate they succeed? Plus, are we somehow now making a monopoly argument? Because, monopoly, and censoring content, are unrelated in any way.

    What’s the remedy for monopoly power, breaking up the company. How would that change the unrelated censorship argument? Would the YouTube that used to be part of Google behave differently? and why would they?

    Colonel Klink (Ret) (6e7a1c)

  161. Col K, monopolies and public utilities have nothing to do with protected classes.

    You are jousting with clouds.

    Kishnevi (ca461e)

  162. @ nk (#148): You’re quite right also: It could happen here, and the “net neutrality” nonsense was indeed a giant camel shoving its nose past the bottom of the tent, with Obama pushing its butt tent-wards as hard as he could. Ajit Pai smacked said camel nose as hard as he could, and it’s pulled back. To get a permanent place inside the tent, net neutrality would need legislation passed through both chambers of Congress and signed by the POTUS.

    Beldar (fa637a)

  163. Since the 1st amendment allows you to petition the government for redress, take your case to them and see if you can convince them to fund buying up Google, Facebook, et al for however many trillion that costs. Because that’s the only way your outcome will happen.

    Trying to back into a public utility argument because the 1st amendment argument fails on it’s face, still wouldn’t apply because a public utility still is not a public utility.

    Colonel Klink (Ret) (6e7a1c)

  164. @146. ‘It’s no more a ‘Free Market’ than the 4 media Giants that control Television/Hollywood is the Free Market. To have a ‘Free Market’ you need minimal barriers to entry and competitors that truly compete.’

    You really don’t know much about competition in the media biz; in Hollywood all you need is a camera, a cast, a script, a production budget and a means of distribution to reach ROI numbers like these:

    Napoleon Dynamite, 2004; Budget, $400,000; Boxoffice ROI: $46 million
    Paranormal Activity, 2007; Budget, $15,000; Boxoffice ROI: $193 million
    Once, 2007; Budget, $150,000; Boxoffice ROI $23 million
    Blair Witch Project, 1999; Budget, $60,000; Boxoffice ROI $248 million
    MadMax, 1979; Budget, $300,000; Boxoffice ROI: $100 million
    Night Of The Living Dead, 1968; Budget $114,000; Boxoffice ROI: $30 million
    Rocky, 1976; Budget, $1.1 million; Boxoffice ROI: $225 million
    American Graffiti, 1973; Budget, $777,000; Boxoffice ROI: $140 million
    Halloween, 1978; Budget, $375,000; Boxoffice ROI: $70 million
    Saw, 2004; Budget, $1.2 million; Boxoffice ROI: $103 million

    Shoot some movies of Bigfoot on your Super 8 camera in the backyard and make up good story to go with it, and you could make a fortune.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  165. Sorry, you’ll have to go to law school or something. Ars longa, commentarium brevis.

    nk (dbc370)

  166. Col K, monopolies and public utilities have nothing to do with protected classes.

    How are you getting AmaGoogBook to do what you want?

    What problem are you trying to solve, and what does success look like to you?

    Colonel Klink (Ret) (6e7a1c)

  167. @155. Reads like those ‘wild west’ early radio days mentioned up the thread; pre-code times as well. There were ‘work arounds’ w/Hays; still Hays and Hughes managed to get Russell ‘busted.’ 😉

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  168. What are the barriers to entry for competitors for YouTube?

    Large amounts of $$$ needed for startup. Ability to absorb expected losses in the first years. Ability to make deals with the Social Media Giants (Twitter, Facebook, Google, MS). Ability to make deals with content providers, including Record labels, singers, Hollywood, TV, etc. Ability to win legal lawsuits from Youtube over “patent and copyright violations” – they will try to drive you out of business by claiming you are illegally copying them. That’s for starters.

    Why doesn’t someone just start another Auto company, cable company or Computer operating system? Its so simple. Except its not.

    rcocean (1a839e)

  169. “Large amounts of $$$ needed for startup.”

    By definition, this is not a barrier to entry. Money is fungible. YouTube does not control the flow of money. Anyone with the money can indeed buy the servers and the internet access and set up his own competitor to YouTube. A barrier to entry would be, for instance, having exclusive control of all railways and pipelines leading from oilfields, with no alternative routes geographically possible to build a competing railroad or pipeline. Antitrust law is not about making all competitors equal. So bzzzzt! sanctions for your lawyer for making this naive argument.

    “Ability to absorb expected losses in the first years.”

    See above. Essentially every new business everywhere, not just on the internet, needs adequate initial capitalization. That has absolutely zero to do with “entry barriers.”

    “Ability to make deals with the Social Media Giants (Twitter, Facebook, Google, MS).”

    Nonsense. No one has to make a deal with any other “Social Media Giant” in order to run a video hosting business. Your lawyers’ fines have now been doubled. And nothing YouTube does blocks you from dealing with those companies, if you have something they find interesting. So this is, again, nonsense.

    “Ability to make deals with content providers, including Record labels, singers, Hollywood, TV, etc.”

    Again, YouTube has no market power with which it can stop you from doing these deals. Your sanctions are now in the six figures.

    “Ability to win legal lawsuits from Youtube over “patent and copyright violations” – they will try to drive you out of business by claiming you are illegally copying them. That’s for starters.”

    Again, nonsense on stilts. There’s no great technical secret, no unique and valuable intellectual property, required to set up a video hosting company. As I said before, you can literally hire people to do this for you — including your software indexing — by the hour. If they don’t steal from someone, they’re at zero risk.

    I figure your Rule 11 sanction is now pretty close to $1M. Think hard before you file your lawsuit, rcocean.

    Beldar (fa637a)

  170. Why doesn’t someone just start another Auto company, cable company or Computer operating system? Its so simple. Except its not.

    They do, all the time, new industries are created, industries mature, consolidation happens, some go out of business.

    None of the barriers to entry of which you speak is ever not true of any startup, some die in the crib, so what? IBM was a near monopoly, and now? Microsoft was a near monopoly, and now?

    YouTube is not even a near monopoly, the fact that your lumping Google/YouTube, Facebook, Twitter all together as if they are one thing, kind of proves the point.

    Colonel Klink (Ret) (6e7a1c)

  171. Why doesn’t someone just start another Auto company, cable company or Computer operating system? Its so simple. Except its not.

    And what’s your solution to this problem? Let the government pay for a factory for anyone to build a car? Force the market to pay (how?) to build a new OS, and force the market to adopt it?

    All the things you are talking about have been tried, the State Planning Committee literally had that job. America was kind of against that during the late unpleasantness.

    Colonel Klink (Ret) (6e7a1c)

  172. @169. Large amounts of money needed for start up.

    Not really. Apple started in a garage; Facebook in a dorm room. You should review how ESPN got into the game. Today, SpaceX is soaring and it was one launch away from cratering. Investment capital- be it private or government- w/a reasonable ROI in a timely fashion, finds its way to people and organizations w/good ideas. You could start your own “ground station”– and given the increasing reduction in the size and cost of ‘micro satellites’ one day – not too far off- you could distribute your content on an orbiting bird the size of a briefcase.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  173. They apparently don’t have Teslas where rcocean lives, Colonel Klink, and he thinks his cellphone runs DOS 3.0 while it’s streaming movies without being connected to, umm, a TV community antenna (cable).

    Tesla still has an insane market capitalization, by the way. It hasn’t been the victim of any particular dirty tricks by the regular auto makers, it’s been the victim of its founder’s arrogance and incompetence. Creative destruction is indeed part of the process in the worldwide (relatively, if it weren’t for idiots like Trump) free market for automobiles, and I expect we’re about to see it with Tesla, which will end up collapsing into the arms of some established company acting as a white knight to keep it from Chapter 7 dissolution. Sell short.

    Beldar (fa637a)

  174. Now that I’m retired I’ve been playing with Tesla quite a bit, mostly short, but I had a bunch of 181 contracts last week, and bounced them Thursday.

    You know the quarter’s going to be bad when Musk start’s anonymously leaking rosy stories.

    Colonel Klink (Ret) (6e7a1c)

  175. @174. Perhaps he drives a Tucker. 😉

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  176. So, if a monopolist has invested a few trillion dollars in a truly fine internet backbone/cloud/services structure and offers these services for a price that no one else can touch, due to scale, but just happens to disfavor 10% of the speakers, all from one end of the spectrum, it’s OK because well, anyone can build something to compete with it?

    This is the Libertarian Falacy. The real world does NOT operate by libertarian principles and pretending that some segment will suddenly start doing that is foolish. Nobody is going to try to duplicate Amazon Web Services, and if they did, it would be Google, who has the same attitude.

    There is a point where monopolies get regulated. Happened to AT&T in the last century. You could be a Nazi or a Communist and Ma Bell had to supply you with phone service at the same price everyone else got. No one had to take your calls though.

    Kevin M (21ca15)

  177. I’m not real keen on government getting into the censorship DECISION loop however. That would make the 1st Amendment even more of a travesty than Google/Facebook/Twitter are already making it. FOr government to use private company’s supposed independence as a vehicle to stifle speech it dislikes is the worst of all possible worlds.

    The only conceivable regulation would be to enforce monopolistic communications channels to carry all speech, subject only to the limits that courts have placed on regular speech. Libel is still libel, shouting fire is still shouting fire.

    Failing that, breaking up companies along workable seams (e.g. Facebook doesn’t need to own WhatsApp, Amazon could operate fine on someone else’s web services) could restore the type of competing services that the apologists for these monopolies claim exists now.

    Kevin M (21ca15)

  178. Question: Suppose one Party began to dominate again, as the Democrats did at midcentury. Suppose also that the big communications companies wish to curry favor from said Party and began censoring speech as they divined that the Party would want them to.

    Does the First Amendment still exist because you can get a soapbox and stand in the Free Speech zone and talk? Or does an effective government barrier to unflattering speech, done through a crony cut-out effectively end that freedom?

    Kevin M (21ca15)

  179. NJRob,

    The problem is that these companies allow decisions over content to be made at very low levels and there seems to be no consequence for “getting it wrong*.” This is made worse by their tendency to hire from a narrow cohort which is noted for intolerance of opposing views and a monolithic worldview.

    ————
    * “Ooops”

    Kevin M (21ca15)

  180. It’s unbelievable how pervasive this mistaken notion is. Evidently it’s part of our ubiquitous “the law is what I want it to be” legal philosophy.

    So there is no “publisher/platform” distinction. Should there be? No.

    I’m pretty sure that this misunderstanding has a lot to do with piles of misleading press reports way back when. I recall discussions of some kind of “safe harbor” a site might have if they refrained from editing user comments. Clearly this is not the case, but the resilience of this idea persists, and there is probably a reason for it.

    I would think that if our host edited my comment to say something derogatory about a third party, it would be on him, not me. But failing that, my words are my words, never his.

    Kevin M (21ca15)

  181. It would be the government taking away a defense I could raise in court if someone sued me because Munroe said something defamatory on my site.

    And due to that protection being removed, I would not allow you to comment here.

    So my Section 230 protection gives you the ability to speak here.

    I would be flabbergasted if any volunteer-driven site would allow public comment without something like Section 230. Who has the time to moderate, and even then how would you know what I say about person X isn’t libel?

    The biggest ones should essentially allow anything that would be protected under the First Amendment.

    As I said above this is the ONLY government intervention regulating speech that is acceptable; all other approaches are worse than now.

    Government intervention forcing monopolist communications companies to disgorge some of their channels might also work, but I don’t really see how you would do this to Twitter (3 mini-Twitters doesn’t work). There is no earthly reason why Google has to own YouTube though, and it may be by forcing divestiture that you get actual competing channels (Google might turn right around and start G-Tube and the two services would have to find ways to be different).

    Kevin M (21ca15)

  182. The never Trumpers enjoy eating at the democrats table. Glad you left. Thanks.

    mg (8cbc69)

  183. Why doesn’t someone just start another Auto company,

    You mean like Tesla, Karma, Fisker, Waymo and Cruise? You can also throw in Uber and Lyft if you consider them all to be selling ‘transportation’.

    Time123 (a7a01b)

  184. Beldar,
    IANAL and I don’t know the legal definition of Public Utility. When someone uses it I assume the mean a company that maintains the infrastructure for the public at large. Meaning any member of the public can use it. Using this simple definition of the term I can see how it might look applicable to YouTube or Twitter at a certain point. I personally think we’re a long way from that point and that any cure would likely be worse than the disease, but I can understand that argument.
    I really respect your comments and typically find that I learn a lot from them. I do think you sometimes assume that when a commenter uses a phase that has a specific legal definition in a way that isn’t consistent with it as a term of art they’re engaging in bad legal commentary as opposed to using the term in a way that is consistent with standard English. In my field of work entropy has a specific meaning that can be described with units of measurement. But I know that people will sometimes use “Entropy” to mean “Chaos”, or “decay”, or “general disorder”.
    It’s likely you’re aware of this and already take it into account when you comment but I wanted to point it out. I hope this comes across as respectfully, as it’s intended.
    I understand the outrage when a major platform treats political ideas that are somewhat mainstream as hate speech so outside the norm that the speaker is no longer welcome in polite company and therefore de-platformed. I understand the feeling of outrage when you’re told that someone’s livelihood has been harmed because they articulated a point of view that you share. I understand the feeling of powerlessness when you’re told that the solution to that is to go and build your own multi-billion dollar company where you can say whatever you want. I also understand that many (but not all) social conservatives have become a bunch of super whiny cry-babies with a weird persecution complex and that there’s a lot of people making money by feeding their victim complex. So while I understand where they’re coming from, I don’t find myself persuaded.
    I think their proposed solution will be worse than the disease. A large company like Google or Facebook will 100% work hard to ensure that any rules result in it being harder for new commers to challenge their position. Additionally, I like the way Youtube works. The way they moderate their platform gives me a customer experience I like. That’s why I use. I think it great when people complain about moderation decisions they don’t like. That’s a part of how change happens.

    Final edit, if you’re not one of the social conservatives motivated by a weird persecution complex than I’m not talking about tin my comment above. If you are and want to debate how white Christian people can’t get a fair shake in life go ahead, but a response may be slow coming.

    Time123 (235fc4)

  185. fixed formating

    Beldar,
    IANAL and I don’t know the legal definition of Public Utility. When someone uses it I assume the mean a company that maintains the infrastructure for the public at large. Meaning any member of the public can use it. Using this simple definition of the term I can see how it might look applicable to YouTube or Twitter at a certain point. I personally think we’re a long way from that point and that any cure would likely be worse than the disease, but I can understand that argument.

    I really respect your comments and typically find that I learn a lot from them. I do think you sometimes assume that when a commenter uses a phase that has a specific legal definition in a way that isn’t consistent with it as a term of art they’re engaging in bad legal commentary as opposed to using the term in a way that is consistent with standard English. In my field of work entropy has a specific meaning that can be described with units of measurement. But I know that people will sometimes use “Entropy” to mean “Chaos”, or “decay”, or “general disorder”.
    It’s likely you’re aware of this and already take it into account when you comment but I wanted to point it out. I hope this comes across as respectfully, as it’s intended.

    I understand the outrage when a major platform treats political ideas that are somewhat mainstream as hate speech so outside the norm that the speaker is no longer welcome in polite company and therefore de-platformed. I understand the feeling of outrage when you’re told that someone’s livelihood has been harmed because they articulated a point of view that you share. I understand the feeling of powerlessness when you’re told that the solution to that is to go and build your own multi-billion dollar company where you can say whatever you want. I also understand that many (but not all) social conservatives have become a bunch of super whiny cry-babies with a weird persecution complex and that there’s a lot of people making money by feeding their victim complex. So while I understand where they’re coming from, I don’t find myself persuaded.

    I think their proposed solution will be worse than the disease. A large company like Google or Facebook will 100% work hard to ensure that any rules result in it being harder for new comers to challenge their position. Additionally, I like the way Youtube works. The way they moderate their platform gives me a customer experience I like. That’s why I use. I think it great when people complain about moderation decisions they don’t like. That’s a part of how change happens.

    Final Note, if you’re not one of the social conservatives motivated by a weird persecution complex than I’m not talking about tin my comment above. If you are and want to debate how white Christian people can’t get a fair shake in life go ahead, but a response may be slow coming.

    Time123 (235fc4)

  186. The never Trumpers enjoy eating at the democrats table. Glad you left. Thanks.

    What does that mean?

    Patterico (115b1f)

  187. The biggest ones should essentially allow anything that would be protected under the First Amendment.

    As I said above this is the ONLY government intervention regulating speech that is acceptable; all other approaches are worse than now.

    I did not suggest government intervention but a norm, which if not observed leads to criticism.

    If we establish the principle that legislators may tell companies what speech they must allow on their private property, I can’t imagine that power being abused. Can you?

    Patterico (115b1f)

  188. The biggest ones should essentially allow anything that would be protected under the First Amendment.

    So, your proposal is that if i create a site where people are required to talk to each other with a certain amount of respect, and obey certain norms once I get to sufficient size i can no longer moderate my site as I see fit? Now I have to allow pornography, ethnic & religious slurs, and graphic descriptions of violence?

    Time123 (a7a01b)

  189. The problem is that these companies allow decisions over content to be made at very low levels and there seems to be no consequence for “getting it wrong*.” This is made worse by their tendency to hire from a narrow cohort which is noted for intolerance of opposing views and a monolithic worldview.

    How do you know their aren’t consequences? They’re not making consequences public but what large company does that? Who would want to work at one that does? You have no idea what they do.

    Where I work when you make a mistake the first thing that happens is you and your boss go over what happened and why to try and make sure that you’re trained and coached to not make the mistake again. than we look at the standard training and process to understand if that should have been sufficient or if improvements are needed there. I can’t think of example I’ve been involved in that resulted in public dismissal.

    Time123 (235fc4)

  190. Time123,

    I suggest you watch yourself. Our host here is tolerant to a point, but I’m checking off a laundry list of ways in which you have abused his goodwill here already. If I were in Pat’s shoes, I would have thrown you in moderation several posts upthread already.

    Gryph (08c844)

  191. And as for the definition of “public utilities,” there is a very precise and rather arcane legal definition. It goes back to the establishment of “common carrier” protocols, primarily for the electrical grid. The argument for legally classifying the internet as such is that moving around bits is basically akin to moving around electricity. Among the many problems with this line of thinking is that even in the electrical grid, government-granted monopolies due to common carrier statuses have stifled innovation so badly, the outdated hub-and-spoke model of providing electricity leaves us vulnerable to EMP attack or any other number of outage problems.

    If the internet is classified as a common carrier, watch innovation likewise come to a grinding halt. Along with all of the problems would disappear most of the good things we’ve come to appreciate over the last 25 years.

    Gryph (08c844)

  192. If we establish the principle that legislators may tell companies what speech they must allow on their private property, I can’t imagine that power being abused. Can you?

    If government chooses which speech would be allowed? A terrible idea, of course. It’s why we have the 1st Amendment.

    But if they let a monopoly company that they tolerate do the same thing, how is that better? Isn’t censorship-by-proxy still censorship? And if the government DOESN’T like how they censor, it will stop tolerating them, which will encourage said company(s) to keep the government’s favor.

    The only way this works is to impose the same rule on the monopoly company that is imposed on government.

    Kevin M (21ca15)

  193. @ Time123: Thanks for your thoughtful comment at #187.

    It’s not just “any” infrastructure that a public utility maintains for common use. It has to be infrastructure for a necessity — water and electricity being the paradigm examples. I suppose Congress could say, “We think being able to post video of your dog doing something funny is now of the same vital necessity as having access to clean drinking water, so we hereby make YouTube into a public utility subject to comprehensive regulation.” But posting video of your dog doing something funny isn’t really a necessity; one can live quite a full and complete life without doing that. And as our host’s original post pointed out (quoting Paula Bolyard, whoever she is): “[A] government that has the power to force YouTube to pay Steven Crowder has the power to force all of our websites to run articles that we find deeply offensive and dangerous.”

    Finally, the question isn’t whether you or I in particular can start up a new competitor to one of these companies by ourselves. It’s whether any other potential competitors in the marketplace, acting alone or much more commonly in an aggregate, can do so. Yes, big projects require a ton of initial capital; but it doesn’t all have to come from one person’s pocket. Tesla raised $226M in its IPO in 2010, for example, for a product whose commercial success is still … unproven at best. But at least Tesla claimed to have built the proverbial better mousetrap, whether that turns out to be true in the long run or not. It’s still ultimately true that if you build a genuinely better mousetrap, the world will beat a path to your door — or to your IPO. And knowing that there are still other mousetrap designers working to beat your better mousetrap spurs you to continue making yours better. Government regulation is poison to this entire process, I think you and I would both agree.

    Beldar (fa637a)

  194. Suppose we still had a monopoly phone company like we did 50 years ago. Add to that the technology we currently have for machines to understand speech. Suppose Ma Bell started censoring phone conversations as to content, or even turning off phone service to speakers they disapproved of.

    Would this be permissible because it was a private company, or would Ma Bell’s status as a government-tolerated (maybe even government-enforced) monopoly make it enough of an agent of the state that the 1st Amendment would directly apply?

    Kevin M (21ca15)

  195. Gryph @193, I agree with this entire comment and would only add that I suspect many people who call internet platforms a public utility are making no attempt to use the term with the precision of a lawyer in court.

    If I understand the logic correctly it goes like this:
    Youtube provides an infrastructure for sharing video files. Twitter provides an infrastructure for sharing short comments. Facebook provides an infrastructure for sharing an assortment of content. Because they provide the infrastructure they are utilities and should be regulated as such.

    I think this would be a terrible idea for the reasons you’ve laid out.

    Time123 (235fc4)

  196. Beldar, thank you for pointing out the importance of necessity. That makes a huge difference and is something I was missing.

    Time123 (235fc4)

  197. If we establish the principle that legislators may tell companies what speech they must allow on their private property, I can’t imagine that power being abused. Can you?

    But if they let a monopoly company that they tolerate do the same thing, how is that better? Isn’t censorship-by-proxy still censorship? And if the government DOESN’T like how they censor, it will stop tolerating them, which will encourage said company(s) to keep the government’s favor.

    The only way this works is to impose the same rule on the monopoly company that is imposed on government.

    Kevin,

    several responses to what you wrote.

    1. None of the big social media companies is lacking competition. All of them have viable competitors you’re free to use if you prefer.
    2. Saying it’s censorship by proxy implies that the company is doing the will of the government. I would object to that. But that’s different from a social media company trying to create a user experience that the largest number of people will enjoy by kicking out people they don’t want to participate. Spend time contrasting GAB and Twitter for an example.
    3. Your point about companies that are under stricter regulation needing to stay in the good graces of the government is a large part or why I wouldn’t want YourTube so classified.

    Time123 (a7a01b)

  198. “Suppose we still had a monopoly phone company like we did 50 years ago. Add to that the technology we currently have for machines to understand speech. Suppose Ma Bell started censoring phone conversations as to content, or even turning off phone service to speakers they disapproved of.”

    You’ve used this hypothetical before, and it’s not a good one, because your basic premise is wrong.

    You’re assuming that youtube, twitter, etc are taking action because they don’t like the speech in question. This is incorrect. They take action because their customers (which are advertisers, not the people being banned) don’t like the speech, they don’t want their ads associated with bigots, because it’s bad publicity.

    There is no correspondence with the phone company. Nobody is losing money if someone uses the n-word on the phone. In your hypothetical, the phone company is a monopoly, so what am I, a woke activist, going to do to harm the phone company if I decide I don’t like klukkers making phone calls? I don’t have an alternative to switch to, or to encourage others to switch to.

    Davethulhu (fab944)

  199. @185. Or Tucker… or DeLorean; but then that goes back to the future.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  200. “If government chooses which speech would be allowed? A terrible idea, of course. But if they let a monopoly company that they tolerate do the same thing, how is that better?”

    – Kevin M

    Because at the end of the day, YouTube is just a bunch of Silicon Valley dudes sitting around fantasizing about “disruption.” The government has the police power.

    YouTube can’t stop me from speaking, just from using their platform. I can use other platforms. The government can throw me in prison.

    Leviticus (efada1)

  201. The utility argument re: YouTube boils down to an easily falsifiable premise that YouTube is the only way to share one’s message with the outside world.

    Leviticus (efada1)

  202. If there were ten Ma Bell’s, none of them would have been “Ma Bell.”

    Leviticus (efada1)

  203. @193. If the internet is classified as a common carrier, watch innovation likewise come to a grinding halt.

    Not necessarily. If you consider it the proverbial ‘superhighway’- aside from basic ‘road work maintenance’ for web infrastructure, what is carried by the carrier would still innovate limited by the load of what the carrier can carry. People don’t drive Model-T’s much anymore and the only thing that grinds to a halt is usually the traffic; so you construct more highway or plan a more efficient route to your destination.
    _____

    Suspect in the years to come, elements and overlays from of how earlier communication mediums became licensed, regulated and standardized w/oversight of ‘standards and practices’ established will be the way of this world in a decade or two. The challenge will be how to classify the likes of a YouTube or a Twitter and so forth- [assuming they’ll survive technological changes to be around in 10 or 20 years] – carriers, broadcasters, publishers… the percentages are a mix to be sure. But ‘public utility’ seems a stretch and the Silicon Valley boys and girls can’t keep pretending they’re wedded to some altruistic idealism. The ‘Wild West’ led to law and order but don’t really see the need or desire for a ‘Will Hays’ type meddling in this… yet.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  204. @180. Ask the Hollywood Ten.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  205. Remember, back in the day when ‘law and order’ came to the ‘Wild West’ days of broadcasting, it was FCC regs/government licensing protocol which required broadcasters to set aside a percentage of their air time to news as part of the public interest service to get their ticket and assigned a frequency. Broadcasters weren’t keen on that money losing requirement as the cash cow was in entertainment programming– fast forward a few decades into the time as radio blossomed into television days and it was CBS owner Bill Paley who boasted that his award winning CBS News division w/Murrow, Cronkite and so on, which always lost money, had their annual budget paid for from the ad revenue from a single entertainment program: ‘I Love Lucy’. By the ’80s, w/unregulated cable on the rise, actual news suffered w/profitability found in the growth of broadcast ‘entertainment news’- ‘news magazines’ and such. Today, the cablers- and webbies- know what draws eyes and clicks- by the minute- and its more likely ‘entertaining’ opinion shouters and kitty cats than hard news.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  206. Well, to quote Walt Whitman, “I too am not a bit tamed. I too am untranslatable. I sound my barbaric yawp over the roofs of the world!”

    Whitman became the quintessential American poet because he had an advantage–he had his own printing press. Thus, he was at once author, editor and publisher. He could write whatever he wanted without interference from anyone, certainly not the government.

    Other poets at the time did not have this advantage. Emily Dickenson, for example, only published eight poems in her lifetime. Editors kept changing her spelling, capitalization, punctuation, and rhymes to make them more “conventional.” That is, more “acceptable” to the reading public. So she gave up, as it were, submitting her poems for publication, and simply wrote for herself, by herself. Over 1,700 poems she wrote by hand, bound in little fascicles sewn together by thread, and kept in a treasury box, undiscovered until after her death.

    Her first editor, Maybell Loomis Todd, betrayed her inspiration, by changing spelling, capitalization, punctuation, and rhymes to make them more conventional or acceptable. And so it went for a century, until Thomas H. Johnson published the Complete Poems, as written, in 1950. Only then did Dickenson become to be realized as the great poet she truly was. When her work was not corrupted by editors and social commentators as to what is conventional or acceptable.

    Gawain's Ghost (b25cd1)

  207. DCSCA — And all that Ed Murrow / Walter Cronkite flavored stuff is available to those who want it on NPR. The history of freedom of the press here is full of yellow rags and factual misstatements. The Republic survived it and evolved.

    If people want bread and circuses, and all you give them is spinach and educational programs, you will, eventuially, lose your audience.

    Appalled (d07ae6)

  208. the times singles out Milton friedman, as the first gateway of crimethink, the border of where to deplatform,

    narciso (d1f714)

  209. @209. Actually, it’s available at the ‘Museum of Broadcasting’… aka Paley Center for Media, founded by William S. Paley. And among the tastier cans of spinach recently reopened: “CBS Reports: D-Day Plus 20 Years: Eisenhower Returns To Normandy w/Walter Cronkite”, 1964. But then, for the circus trade, there’s always ‘Hogan’s Heroes.’

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  210. If there were ten Ma Bell’s, none of them would have been “Ma Bell.”

    Once there were several Baby Bells. The thing that is now AT&T bought them up again. The saving grace here is that there ARE alternatives and the barrier to entry on VOIP is miniscule.

    None of the big social media companies is lacking competition. All of them have viable competitors you’re free to use if you prefer.
    I am fascinated to hear there are viable alternatives to Facebook. I guess in some respects LinkedIn would be one, but it’s very limited in scope. Google shut down their competitor, and if Google can’t, um, hang then who can? MySpace? A dying clown car that lost most of it’s user data without a backup.

    That Facebook buys alternative channels like WhatsApp and InstaGram, and tried to buy SnapChat, points out a danger to the “but there are alternatives” argument.

    They take action because their customers (which are advertisers, not the people being banned) don’t like the speech, they don’t want their ads associated with bigots, because it’s bad publicity.
    Really? When Gab attracted the crazy Right, banned from Twitter, it was Amazon Web Services that lowered the hammer. What advertisers does AWQS insert into its hosted content? When they tried to create private commenting overlay using a browser plugin, again visible to no one else and affecting no advertisers, Mozilla and Chrome banned the plugin. In none of those cases were advertisers involved. Now, I’m not a fan of Gab, but Twitter’s sensitivity to political whackjobs seems one-sided. Point me to the cesspool of Maoist revolutionaries or jihadists that have been ejected from Twitter. I guess their corporate sponsors have no problem with the Mao Tse Tung brigade.

    Kevin M (21ca15)

  211. “If government chooses which speech would be allowed? A terrible idea, of course. But if they let a monopoly company that they tolerate do the same thing, how is that better?”
    – Kevin M

    Because at the end of the day, YouTube is just a bunch of Silicon Valley dudes sitting around fantasizing about “disruption.” The government has the police power.

    You miss my point, while making it. Indeed government has the police power. And if you know what’s good for your monopoly you’ll figure out what the government wants you to censor, and censor it or maybe they’ll decide to break you up. I’m pretty sure that Trump has already made that point to Bezos et al.

    Kevin M (21ca15)

  212. @209. Postscript. Among the more interesting broadcast growth arcs was televising professional golf. Back in the day, before cable, the network suits would crank endlessly about carrying it given the low Trendex/Nielsen numbers. But the counter argument was the numbers, though low, compared to other sports, were consistent, suggesting a loyal audience. With the advent of cable, support and financial backing from same, the lowering cost of satellite access and the likes of Joe Gibbs and especially the support of the great Arnold Palmer, the Golf Channel was born and has subsequently thrived.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  213. Well, if you happened to tune into CNBC today, you could have heard a man at the White House saying this…

    “I’ll tell you this The European Union, which is a fantastic group of negotiators, they actually, a very, very prominent person who you know well, who’s on your show a lot, said the person at the European Union that is in charge of taxation hates the United States more than any person anywhere in the world,” Trump began. “But I really believe that’s true! Every week you see them going after Facebook and Apple and all of these companies that are great companies. There’s something going on.”

    “When they give European Union $7 billion and $5 billion and $2 billion, you know, Apple gets sued for $10 billion, and you know, right now it’s going on and they’ll end up settling, they get all this money,” he said, RawStory reports. “Well, we should be doing that! They’re our companies, so they’re actually attacking our companies. But we should be doing what they’re doing! They think there’s a monopoly, but I’m not sure that they think that, they just figure this is easy money, we’ll sue Apple for $7 billion and we’ll make a settle or win the case. So I think it’s a bad situation but obviously there is something going on in terms of monopoly.”

    So there’s that.

    Colonel Klink (Ret) (6e7a1c)

  214. You can watch it here. I recommend Parker’s Heritage #7 before, during, and after.

    Colonel Klink (Ret) (6e7a1c)

  215. @215. Meh. ‘Apple’ is “our” company says our Captain, of ‘Tim Apple’ fame. Which is why their most popular and profitable product is assembled and exported to the U.S. from… China.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  216. My question is, what does that word fruit salad mean? None of those words go with the words following the word. I mean, they’re all words, singly, just assembled in a series as came from his mouth hole that makes no sense. Senseless, I’m concerned that he needs to be in a home, and only allowed to eat with a spoon.

    Colonel Klink (Ret) (6e7a1c)

  217. The EU is a bunch of privileged Junkers all appointing each other to office. Then they get together and decide how to use the police power of the state to extort money from foreigners.

    Kevin M (21ca15)

  218. @218. It’s ‘brain farting.’ Another opportunity for face time’ on another cabler– and for folks to tweet and post about him and not something else. Local NYers learned in the ’80s how to ‘read’ him on the fly – away from a script before cameras– and when to tune him out but now that he’s CiC and every word carries consequences, it’s a challenge to decipher intent west of the Hudson… or across the pond in Buckingham Palace.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  219. @221. Clouseau!

    DCSCA (797bc0)


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