[guest post by JVW]
At National Review Online, Phillip Klein sees a problem for the argument that Facebook, Twitter, Google/YouTube, etc. are just private companies who reach their own independent conclusions on what user-posted content is acceptable and unacceptable, and that government interference (and, by inference, political ideology) does not come into play:
During the Thursday press briefing, [White House Press Secretary Jen] Psaki said regarding COVID-19 messaging that “we’re flagging problematic posts for Facebook that spread disinformation.”
[. . . ]
Psaki’s comment adds a new layer to the debate [as to whether Big Tech companies are truly independent of government influence]. Even if it may not matter legally, if Facebook is colluding with the government to suppress speech, it becomes much harder rhetorically to hide behind the “we’re a private company” defense. My guess is that Psaki’s comments will nudge more conservatives closer to the MAGA position of going after Big Tech if they were not already there.
In a more sane world, even progressives who are concerned about the intersection of Big Business and Big Government might be alarmed at this sort of collusion. But maybe since it benefits the agenda of a Democrat Administration they see it as a necessary evil to advance their goals. But woe unto them if the populists get tired of being dictated to by New York, Austin, Seattle, and Silicon Valley.