PragerU Does Not Understand Censorship

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PragerU, the prolifically popular creator of conservative video content run by radio host Dennis Prager, claims that it is being censored by big tech. The organization took to Twitter to announce that the platform had banned it from running ads.

https://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js

Except that’s not actually censorship, as Twitter’s advertising policies have nothing to do with free speech. The First Amendment protects PragerU from government action, not from the decisions of a private company.

What’s more, PragerU is not actually being silenced by the social media site. Far from it: A quick glance at the nonprofit’s Twitter feed shows that it uses the platform to great advantage, with hundreds of thousands of followers and a bevy of tweets that drive mega-engagement. If PragerU was actually “censored” by Twitter, they would not have a Twitter platform at all.

“The @PragerU Twitter Ads account is ineligible to advertise on the Twitter Ads platform due to repeated violation of our Twitter Ads policies. The account may, however, continue to tweet organically as long as it complies with the Twitter Rules,” a Twitter spokesperson told Fox News last month.

PragerU also has a beef with Google. Bizarrely, the conservative video-maker has accused the company of rigging internet search results to reflect poorly on PragerU.

https://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js

Except that’s not how Google searches actually work. The tech company’s algorithm considers the search history of each user and tailors its suggestions accordingly. For instance, I did a “PragerU” search on my laptop using an incognito browser, which scrubbed my history for a clean search. The Google results I received were much more favorable to PragerU. In other words, there is no Google conspiracy here.

https://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js

Regrettably, such clear evidence probably won’t convince Prager himself, who recently appeared before the Senate Judiciary Subcommittee on the Constitution to put Google on full-blast for—you guessed it—censorship.

“I promise you, one day you will say, first they came after conservatives, and I said nothing,” said Prager, a reference the famous post-Holocaust poem by Martin Niemöller. “And then they came after me—and there was no one left to speak up for me.”

But instead of complaining about the actions of private companies, Prager should educate himself about what censorship actually means.


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1 thought on “PragerU Does Not Understand Censorship”

  1. Except that Google and Twitter do ban ideas. I’ve been banned by Twitter with no reply. Twitter shadow bans. Google has been found to be shadow banning cryptocurrency channels. Yes, any private organization should be free to ban whatever they want EXCEPT Google is what should be an illegal monopoly. They engage in illegal activities of buying out ideas and competitors. They are about 95 percent of search. Basically they control the internet and they do discriminate about what sites get shown in results. They also banned COVID-19 content that was true. A true libertarian need not support corporate syndicate monopolies. I recently wrote an article that was banned at cent. Google does punish and reward sites based on content and they have reputation managers. And yes, your right they do choose who to show what in a search, but that is far from innocent and more like nefarious.

    Reply

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