David Icke & His Work

Yithian

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Can you NOT tell the difference between subversive ideas and insane shite?

After this week, with so many people thinking it's perfectly OK to allow rampant lies and misinformation to rule, I'm keen to give up. It's been rather convincingly demonstrated that critical thinking has failed for about half the population. They are ill-equipt to tell truth from fiction, reality from fantasy and judge a reasonable course of action that affects their very lives. And, they vote. A functioning society cannot exist under conditions like this. It's not a good look for 21st-century humanity.
I was speaking to others in this thread as well. I only HOPE they are being sarcastic. But the worst of Forteanism is naivete about how easily influenced an individual or the rest of the population can be. Not everyone has the foundation to judge good ideas from bad. In the case of COVID - misinformation DOES harm many others. To flippantly suggest it's just "nonsense" or harmless, like lizard people, is absurd.

I think I'm fairly good at distinguishing subversive ideas from insane shit; my concern is that I.T. mega-corps running automated algorithms are not.

I agree with your two points: that a) misinformation can have deadly real-world consequences, and b) much of the population lacks the critical skills to make rational appraisals of information presented to them.

What I disagree with you on is that the remedy is to allow (nay encourage) private companies to police public speech.

The remedy to concern 'a' lies in reforming the education system, while that to 'b' should reside with democratically elected and accountable governments and the legal system.

Not Jack Dorsey.
 
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Spookdaddy

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Follow the money innit? The people in control of social media platforms are probably more concerned about their advertising revenue and how that could be negatively affected if they appear to show support for 'fringe' theories.
Given that some of the suspended accounts are extremely popular and that dropping them involves losing advertising revenue, I'm not sure that's entirely logical. And, besides, I really don't think anyone stops watching videos of dogs running into walls, old sit-coms, and interviews with lady Gaga because somewhere else some nutter's telling everyone that eating with spoons gives you cancer.
 

Trevp666

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True....I probably hadn't thought that through totally....but you know what I'm getting at. Those that are in charge of these platforms probably feel that they would be accused of guilt by association with the 'fringe theory' people if they're allowed to broadcast any old nonsense, so prefer to remove it from their channels instead of having to defend their right to 'free speech' if challenged.
The loss of the revenue from these removed articles is probably less (in their minds) than the loss overall if left in place.
 

EnolaGaia

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So-called 'social' media platforms aren't public services - they're private enterprises. Your access to them is governed by the terms and conditions of membership set by the owners and operators of the enterprise.

Whatever general free speech rights are due you in your Real World (tm) locale's public spaces don't necessarily carry over into restricted access privately held spaces.

If you don't agree with the price of admission and / or the house rules, go elsewhere.
 

Yithian

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So-called 'social' media platforms aren't public services - they're private enterprises. Your access to them is governed by the terms and conditions of membership set by the owners and operators of the enterprise.

Whatever general free speech rights are due you in your Real World (tm) locale's public spaces don't necessarily carry over into restricted access privately held spaces.

If you don't agree with the price of admission and / or the house rules, go elsewhere.
'Go elsewhere' is often ambitious.

The point is that the established entrances to the theoretical public space are controlled by private enterprise.

Yes, you can establish a rival to YouTube, but the 'visibility' of your new video-sharing site is governed by Google, which owns YouTube.

They can de-rank your site, delist your site entirely or flag your site with warnings at will.

Elsewheres are, hence, prohibitively expensive.

The hurdle for access is too high and a level playing field should be established by statute.

We would not accept the private phone networks limiting who you may call, or who may appear in the phone-book, or varying the quality of your connection according to whom you are calling.

Twitter, YouTube and Facebook claim the privilege of a publisher to edit and control their clients' content while simultaneously asserting that the legal liability for their clients' statements and content lies with those clients alone. They are either curating material (and are hence liable) or they are not (in which case they should cease meddling).

This is an iniquitous attempt to both have and to eat cake.
 

Spookdaddy

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I'm genuinely not sure what the answer is. Banning somehow feels wrong, but I can't say it makes me fear for my freedom of speech - the entities involved are private companies and if I don't like what they do then I don't use their services (which I don't). Publishing houses reject vast numbers of manuscripts compared to those they publish - but no-one accuses them of attacking freedom of speech because they don’t churn it all out; is what they are doing here really that different? (I’m playing devil’s advocate here; I really don’t know – feel free to shred.)

The way information is disseminated has shifted over the last decade or so in a way that is utterly seismic - but the results of this are so ubiquitous, universal and built in to our lives that we have become almost unconscious of that enormous change. Despite the monumental shift we are still looking at it through the lens of what has gone before, including the checks and balances that were developed when it took days, weeks and months to disseminate misinformation, rather than seconds; we are like people who went to bed using horses and carts and woke up in the morning to supersonic travel – without any intervening time to invent the seatbelt. We assume that we already have all the tools to deal with this – but if we can no longer fix the way that information is disseminated with a spanner and a mallet, why do we automatically assume that we can make it work without killing people with the same machinery that was around when we could.

And I’m not saying that I’m right. I don’t know what the answer is, but I do know that I honestly don’t feel that my freedoms are being attacked because a private company stops some twat telling people that the Rothschilds are part of a cult that created the coronavirus. Really – I do not.
 
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dr wu

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Regarding Sharon's comment above...RAWilson once said that 'if you take the average person on the street...by definition 50% of the people are dumber than that.'
:worry:
 

GNC

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There's a reason fraud is still a crime. And libel.
 

EnolaGaia

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Twitter, YouTube and Facebook claim the privilege of a publisher to edit and control their clients' content while simultaneously asserting that the legal liability for their clients statements and content lies with those clients alone. They are either curating material (and are hence liable) or they are not (in which case they should cease meddling).

This is an iniquitous attempt to both have and to eat cake.
That's entirely legal, and it's the same pesky duality that's built into - and enforced - on this site as well.

Check the Terms & Rules, which were deliberately / explicitly / consensually crafted to afford this site's operators (and, by extension, its sponsors) unlimited license to manage the content posted here while simultaneously assigning liability for said content to whomever posted it. Any filtering of member content at the point of receipt is explicitly limited to those categories of content which are listed as being prohibited. Any subsequent retention or modification of member content is subject to the discretion of the Staff in relation to internal management of the site and its offerings to members and the general public as well as the guidelines laid down in the Terms & Rules.

BTW - though less clearly stated, this same duality of acceptability / liability was part and parcel of the Terms & Conditions in force at the old FTMB when it was sponsored by Dennis Publishing.
 

Yithian

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That's entirely legal, and it's the same pesky duality that's built into - and enforced - on this site as well.

Check the Terms & Rules, which were deliberately / explicitly / consensually crafted to afford this site's operators (and, by extension, its sponsors) unlimited license to manage the content posted here while simultaneously assigning liability for said content to whomever posted it. Any filtering of member content at the point of receipt is explicitly limited to those categories of content which are listed as being prohibited. Any subsequent retention or modification of member content is subject to the discretion of the Staff in relation to internal management of the site and its offerings to members and the general public as well as the guidelines laid down in the Terms & Rules.

BTW - though less clearly stated, this same duality of acceptability / liability was part and parcel of the Terms & Conditions in force at the old FTMB when it was sponsored by Dennis Publishing.
I've always been sceptical about how legally watertight this is though!

You can get members to click assent to anything you like, but if the agreement isn't legal, the site owners are still the ones who will receive any summons. If we--the moderators--were to permit the posting of illegal content, or negligently allowed it to appear due to lack of oversight, I doubt T&C would indemnify us at all.

It never seems to get tested as hosts inevitably bail and pull sites offline if legally threatened.
 

brownmane

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The way information is disseminated has shifted over the last decade or so in a way that is utterly seismic - but the results of this are so ubiquitous, universal and built in to our lives that we have become almost unconscious of that enormous change. Despite the monumental shift we are still looking at it through the lens of what has gone before, including the checks and balances that were developed when it took days, weeks and months to disseminate misinformation, rather than seconds
I tend to feel that Spookdaddy has a good idea of why people do have difficulty in discerning what is fact and what is misinformation or disinformation. Stuff comes in so fast and furious nowadays, that you barely have time think about what is being said.

Add onto that, that computer algorithms then "decide" that based on what the person just clicked, that person needs more of the same. There is no automatic balancing of information. If you have happened onto bad info the first time, then you will get the same again.

And the available search engines make sure that people return to wherever and whatever that search engine's company is selling.
 

Stormkhan

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There are plenty of twats about, but should they be denied a platform because some people think they are twats?
Those people don't have to watch the twat's content.
No, people don't have to watch. This is not the point. The point is publication.
For decades folks have come up with crackpot theories, many turning out to be right on the button. Many have come up with absolute twaddle that has *gasp* proven to be twaddle.
Investigative journalists have uncovered terrible, criminal acts. They have been gagged, they have been published only to risk ridicule, censure and sometimes physical threat. However, they struggled for publication, for credibility, and to be heard! However, the advent of the internet means anyone can publish, any one can trawl the internet and say they've 'investigated'. The 'profession' of investigative journalist has been opened up, which might be considered a good thing because anyone can question. But what are they questioning? Stuff on the internet. And what is the guarantee that the stuff on the internet is factual? Truthful, even.
There has always been a form of censorship, and I'm not talking about gub'mint gag orders.
In real life, people don't say things if they think they might get a punch in the face. This is self-censorship and is quietly associated with tact, diplomacy and awareness. Online, however, this self-censorship is weakened. Just because you can say summat, doesn't mean you should.
In the publishing world, an author had to go through a selection process, either by agent or publisher. You had editors. Sometimes folks had to hear "Sorry, but your story is badly written" or "good writing but shite concept." You were encouraged to self-censorship in that you had to reassess your writing. With the internet, you needn't do any of that. You can publish yourself and encourage followers to buy the online copy - you don't even need the commitment to pay for publishing costs.
Thus the internet has not only given a voice to those who may've been gagged but given a platform to those whose publishers or lawyer may've said "Are you joking?"
Again, it's not denying a platform to a twat. The platform isn't obliged to publish bollocks, just because someone might actually believe it. Consider that repeated publishing of nonsense affects the actual credibility of the platform. Yes, it's down to money but just because it's free to eccentrics wanting to espouse their beliefs, doesn't make the platform free to run.
 
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