President Joe Biden’s administration has recently taken unprecedented action to exert influence over Americans’ digital lives, including broadband internet, net neutrality, social media and artificial intelligence (AI).Read More
In episode 38 of his newest production, “Tucker on X,” host Tucker Carlson interviewed Douglass Mackey, the man sentenced to seven months in prison for sharing deceptive, anti-Hillary Clinton social media posts during the 2016 presidential election.Read More
Supreme Court Associate Justice Samuel Alito on Thursday temporarily blocked an order limiting the Biden administration’s contact with social media firms as litigation proceeds.
Alito’s stay will last until 11:59 p.m. on Sept. 22, the Washington Examiner reported. The Department of Justice has asked the Supreme Court to lift the order from the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals in Missouri v. Biden. That decision largely upheld a lower court order barring the government from working with social media companies to censor disfavored viewpoints online. Litigants have until Sept. 20 to file responses to the DOJ.Read More
A federal judge blocked an Arkansas law Thursday that requires age verification for social media users.
Arkansas’ Social Media Safety Act, which restricts minors from creating social media accounts without parental consent, was scheduled to take effect Friday. U.S. District Court Judge for the Western District of Arkansas Timothy Brooks, an Obama appointee, sided with NetChoice, a group that includes companies like Google and TikTok, and temporarily blocked the law from being enforced.Read More
The following is a condensed version of “One Generation Passeth Away, and Another Cometh” by Sam Negus, published at Law & Liberty.
Three millennia ago, King Solomon wrote that “folly is bound up in the heart of a child.” It has ever been thus: the rueful old lament the apparent decadence of the young. In her new book Generations, social scientist Jean Twenge suggests an obvious explanation for this ageless trend: “It might be because they [are] always right. With technology making life progressively less physically taxing, each generation is softer…”Read More
Smartphones are the new cigarettes: They should not be in the hands of children.
Conservatives often hesitate to use the force of government to ban something, even if it is clearly harmful. Avoid the nanny state, let the free market handle it, and so on. But what if we have a crisis?Read More
The Supreme Court could hear a case questioning a California agency’s coordination with Twitter to censor election-related “misinformation.”
O’Handley v. Weber, which concerns the California Secretary of State’s Office of Election Cybersecurity’s work with Twitter to monitor “false or misleading” election information, was appealed to the Supreme Court on June 8. The case raises questions similar to those posed in the free speech lawsuit Missouri v. Biden, now being appealed in the Fifth Circuit: Can the government lawfully induce private actors to censor protected speech?Read More
A federal judge denied the Biden administration’s attempt to pause an injunction that bars federal officials from communicating with social media companies for the purposes of censoring protected speech on Monday.
The Biden administration appealed Western District of Louisiana Judge Terry A. Doughty’s July 4 injunction on Wednesday, also requesting an emergency order to pause the injunction while the appeal is pending on Thursday night. Doughty denied the administration’s emergency order Monday, finding that plaintiffs would likely succeed in proving the government colluded with social media companies “to engage in viewpoint-based suppression of protected free speech.”Read More
The kids aren’t alright, and it’s starting to show. Last week, the New York Post published a front-page story that heralded “The New Great Depression,” tracking the twin rise of social media and juvenile depression.
Since 1991, the University of Michigan has annually polled thousands of students in middle and high school, asking whether they agree with the following three statements: “I can’t do anything right,” “I do not enjoy life,” and “My life is not useful.”Read More
Former Fox News primetime host Tucker Carlson on Thursday released the second episode of his newest production, “Tucker on Twitter.” The episode, titled, “Cling to your taboos!” is a 12-minute long video podcast where Carlson addresses the connection between pedophilia and the growing acceptance of white supremacy without defining it.Read More
TikTok hasn’t exactly got Facebook dancing in the streets.
The Chinese-owned social media app is rapidly eating away at Facebook’s user base, especially among the under-30s crowd, which seems to think that Facebook is for the over-the-hill crowd.Read More
Utah passed legislation Thursday to require parental consent for children to use certain social media apps, becoming the first state in the country to limit teenagers’ social media usage.
Republican Gov. Spencer Cox signed two bills into law that limits minors from using social media apps like TikTok, requiring parental consent for those under 18. Minors are prohibited from using these platforms between 10:30 p.m. and 6:30 a.m., and are subjected to age verification prior to social media use.Read More
Former President Donald Trump made his first post on Facebook Friday since being banned in 2021 following the Jan. 6, 2021 riot at the Capitol building. “I’M BACK!,” the former President posted, including a video clip from his 2016 election-night victory over former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton.Read More
U.S. Congressman Mike Gallagher (R-WI-8) this weekend expressed heightened optimism about the prospect of banning all American use of the video-sharing application TikTok after the Senate version of his bill to do so gained bipartisan support.
Last week, Senator Angus King, an independent who is a member of his chamber’s Democratic Caucus, joined Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL) in cosponsoring the legislation, known as the Averting the National Threat of Internet Surveillance, Oppressive Censorship and Influence and Algorithmic Learning by the Chinese Communist Party Act (ANTI-SOCIAL CCP Act). The measure has enjoyed bipartisan backing in the House of Representatives since its introduction in December, being cosponsored by Representative Raja Krishnamoorthi (D-IL-8).Read More
In his work The Western Canon, Harold Bloom wrote that a “reader does not read for easy pleasure or to expiate social guilt, but to enlarge a solitary existence.” The apparent message in Bloom’s flourish is that a reader ought to be after something more difficult to attain than mere pleasure. Passive consumption of entertainment will simply not do. Instead, readers are to be fully engaged with the work in front of them, especially when the process is difficult. It’s through this difficulty that a reader inevitably enlarges what Bloom refers to as a “solitary existence,” or, put another way, an existential engagement with the human condition.Read More
A new study from the University of North Carolina shows children and teens who frequently check social media may become more sensitive in the long term to “social feedback” in the form of “likes” and “dislikes” at a time when the brain is experiencing significant developmental changes.
In the study, published at the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) Pediatrics, researchers Maria Maza, et al, investigated whether the frequency with which middle-school age children check their Facebook, Instagram, and Snapchat social media accounts is associated with long-term changes in brain development as they mature further into adolescence.Read More
The Vatican defrocked Priest for Life Director Frank Pavone without the possibility of appeal for social media posts the church considered to be “blasphemous.”
The Prefect of the Dicastery for the Clergy dismissed Pavone on November 9, according to a December 13 letter to U.S. bishops from Archbishop Christophe Pierre, who serves as Pope Francis’ representative to the United States, the Catholic News Agency reported Saturday.Read More
A bipartisan group of federal lawmakers this week filed legislation in the House of Representatives to ban the TikTok video-sharing application nationwide.
Congressmen Mike Gallagher (R-WI-8) and Raja Krishnamoorthi (D-IL-8) submitted their bill in the House of Representatives while Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL) introduced companion legislation in his chamber. They call their measure the Averting the National Threat of Internet Surveillance, Oppressive Censorship and Influence, and Algorithmic Learning by the Chinese Communist Party Act (ANTI-SOCIAL CCP Act). It is written broadly enough to possibly prohibit use of other platforms operating under the influence of “a country of concern” such as China or Russia.Read More
The fourth entry in the ongoing “Twitter Files” series of explosive revelations dropped on Saturday night, with part four in the series focusing on the removal of Donald Trump from the popular social media platform in early 2021.
The latest thread, published by writer Michael Shellenberger, details the process that “Twitter executives” took as they were “build[ing] the case for a permanent ban” against the former Republican president.Read More
Tesla CEO Elon Musk is proposed to buy Twitter at the price he originally offered, according to letter from his attorneys to those representing the social media company.
The letter, obtained by NBC News, was date Monday and confirmed news reports early Tuesday that Musk had offered Monday evening to purchase Twitter at $54.20 per share, which amounts to $44 billion for the entire company.Read More
A consortium of four private groups worked with the departments of Homeland Security (DHS) and State to censor massive numbers of social media posts they considered misinformation during the 2020 election, and its members then got rewarded with millions of federal dollars from the Biden administration afterwards, according to interviews and documents obtained by Just the News.
The Election Integrity Partnership is back in action again for the 2022 midterm elections, raising concerns among civil libertarians that a chilling new form of public-private partnership to evade the First Amendment’s prohibition of government censorship may be expanding.Read More
A U.S. district court Tuesday ordered the Justice Department (DOJ) to produce communications between National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases Director Anthony Fauci, White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre and social media companies.
Republican Attorneys General Eric Schmitt of Missouri and Jeff Landry of Louisiana filed a lawsuit against the administration in May for allegedly colluding with social media companies or coercing them to suppress disfavored content on platforms using “disinformation,” “misinformation” and “malinformation” labels in violation of the First Amendment. District Judge Terry Doughty mandated as part of the case Tuesday that communications between the companies and Fauci and Jean-Pierre be provided based on Schmitt and Landry’s requests.Read More
California legislators passed a bill Tuesday that, if signed by Democratic Gov. Gavin Newsom, will require social media companies to consider the mental health of minors that use their products before releasing them to the public.
The legislation would require companies to bolster privacy and security measures for products likely to be used by children and to consider and address potential mental health risks they pose to children. The bill comes amid increasing pressure on companies like TikTok and Instagram following a 2021 report that Facebook, Instagram’s parent company, knew its products were harming teenage girls’ mental health but didn’t fix the issues.Read More
The fight against Lucifer was going pretty well – until the devilish enginery appeared. As John Milton depicts the battle of Satan’s rebellious angels against the forces of Heaven in his epic poem “Paradise Lost,” the demons were on the backfoot, until they devise “implements of mischief” that will “dash/To pieces, and orewhelm whatever stands/Adverse, that they shall fear we have disarmd/The Thunderer of his only dreaded bolt.”Read More
Newly released communications between federal officials and social media companies reveal how the Biden administration and Big Tech coordinated to silence opposing views on a number of topics—especially COVID-19— in “a vast censorship enterprise,” the attorneys General of Missouri and Louisiana alleged in a court filing Thursday.Read More
The FBI said it “routinely notifies” private companies, including social media platforms, of potential threats after Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg said Facebook “decreased” the distribution of the Hunter Biden laptop story right before the 2020 election because of a warning from the FBI.
The FBI’s defense comes after Zuckerberg appeared Thursday on the “The Joe Rogan Experience” podcast. Host Joe Rogan asked Zuckerberg about how Facebook handled the story first broken by The New York Post involving the questionable contents on the laptop of President Joe Biden’s son, Hunter.Read More
New research from a former Google engineer warns TikTok has the ability to track user keystrokes in its Web browser, a claim that is alarming privacy advocates but receiving pushback from the platform’s parent company.Read More
Twitter sued Elon Musk to force him to purchase the social media giant for $44 billion after Musk stated last week that he plans to walk away from the deal.
Despite deflecting the company’s legal threat with humor on Monday, Musk now faces a lawsuit in Chancery Court in Delaware, The New York Times reported Tuesday.Read More
Tesla CEO Elon Musk on Friday announced that he was canceling plans to purchase social media giant Twitter, citing the company’s failure to produce information on fake accounts.
Musk sent a letter to Twitter’s board of directors on Friday announcing he would not acquire the company. He told the Securities and Exchange Commission that Twitter has “not complied with its contractual obligation,” according to the Associated Press.Read More
University of Michigan associate professor Libbey Hemphill recently urged social media platforms to “extend beyond civility” in their hate speech moderation efforts.
In her article “To Truly Target Hate Speech, Moderation Must Extend Beyond Civility,” Hemphill holds up a machine learning program she co-created as a better way to detect hate speech.
“Platforms claim content moderation at scale is too difficult and expensive,” Hemphill writes, “but our team detected white supremacist speech with affordable tools available to most researchers–much less expensive than those available to platforms.”Read More
The U.S. Supreme Court voted 5-4 on Tuesday to temporarily block the Texas law that prohibits social media companies from moderating content based on users’ views.Read More
Using the pretext of the so-called insurrection on January 6, 2021, the long knives are out for Ginni Thomas, wife of Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas.
Post-election text exchanges between Mrs. Thomas and Mark Meadows, President Trump’s chief-of-staff, recently were leaked by the January 6 select committee to none other than the Washington Post’s Bob Woodward, who darkly described the communications as proof that “Ginni Thomas used her access to Trump’s inner circle to promote and seek to guide the president’s strategy to overturn the election result.”
The small cache of texts—29 total—shows Thomas expressing frustration at the election’s outcome. There is nothing sinister, and certainly nothing criminal, about the messages.Read More
Until very recently, NIAID Director Dr. Anthony Fauci was a fixture on cable news, but all of a sudden, he’s all but disappeared from public view.
This has not gone unnoticed on social media.Read More
The infamous hacking group Anonymous appeared to declare an all-out digital war against Russia late this week, indicating the opening of a hacking front against Russian president Vladimir Putin amid his country’s invasion of Ukraine.
Anonymous is a loosely federated collective of hackers who regularly carry out digital sabotage of targets they claim deserve to be hacked. On Friday, a Twitter account purporting to represent some members of Anonymous issued a broad call for hackers to target the Russian government.
“Hackers all around the world: target Russia in the name of #Anonymous,” the account posted. “Let them know we do not forgive, we do not forget. Anonymous owns fascists, always.”Read More
The enthusiasm to join former President Trump’s new new social media platform – Truth Social – on its official launch day appears to have overwhelmed the site.
The site went live Sunday night ahead of its official President’s Day launch. However, potential users in roughly the past 24 hours have reported problem getting on the platform.
“Due to massive demand, we have placed you on our waitlist,” read the message received by several users, according to Reuters.
Other users reported having trouble registering for an account amid the early scramble to join.Read More
It’s no secret that local newspapers have been dying. Since 2004, the United States has lost a quarter of its newspapers — 70 dailies and over 2,000 weeklies. This has been devastating for communities across the country who depend on these newspapers to stay informed and engaged. There are many factors causing this decline, but one of the main culprits, especially as of late, has been Big Tech.
There’s a term to describe the actions of massive corporations manipulating the levers of state power to dominate their markets and pad their bottom lines at the expense of others. It’s crony capitalism. Under this system, crony capitalists flood Washington, DC with campaign contributions, pay-to-play experts, and legions of lobbyists to shape the laws and regulations that govern their industries.
Sound familiar? If you have observed Big Tech’s movements within the halls of power in our nation’s capital over the past decade, you know exactly what I’m talking about. It’s said that if you whisper “Section 230” to yourself three times while walking through the Capitol, a Big Tech-funded lobbyist will suddenly appear to explain why changing even one word in the arcane law might trigger the apocalypse.Read More
The U.S. Capitol Police is running background checks and examining the social media histories of people meeting with lawmakers, Politico reported Monday.
Following the Jan. 6 Capitol riots, the Capitol Police adopted a new policy to dig into the social media feeds of individuals meeting members of Congress, Politico reported, citing three people familiar with the matter as well as internal Capitol Police documents and communications. Targets of the surveillance included congressional staffers as well as lawmakers’ constituents, donors and associates.
Julie Farnam, acting director of intelligence for the Capitol Police and former Department of Homeland Security official, directed analysts to run “background checks” on donors and associates of lawmakers, including instructions to “list and search all political opponents to see if they or their followers intend to attend or disrupt the event,” according to documents reviewed by Politico.Read More
Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison has had his personal account on Chinese-owned social messaging service WeChat taken over by a Chinese tech company and shut down Monday, Reuters reported.
Fuzhou 985 Technology, a China-based technology firm, managed to take control of Morrison’s WeChat account, which currently has 76,000 followers, several months ago, Reuters reported. Morrison reportedly used the account to communicate with Australians of Chinese origin.
Fuzhou rebranded the account as “Australian Chinese New Life” and redirected users visiting the account to Fuzhou’s website, according to a CNN translation.Read More
Former President Donald Trump’s entertainment venture is currently outperforming all other special purpose acquisition companies (SPACs), according to a recent market report.
Digital World Acquisition Corp (DWAC), the SPAC used to take Trump Media & Technology Group (TMTG) public, is outperforming all other SPACs, according to a market analysis by SPAC Research reported by Reuters. The company’s shares ended trading at $73.12 on Friday, giving the company a valuation of roughly $13 billion, according to Reuters.
A SPAC is a company that acquires private companies and lists them publicly on a stock exchange without the private company engaging in an initial public offering (IPO). In this case, Trump used DWAC to take his company public in order to raise funding for his social media venture, TRUTH Social, which he has billed as an alternative to major tech platforms like Facebook and Twitter.Read More
Democratic California Rep. Ro Khanna criticized Twitter and Facebook for censoring the New York Post’s story on Hunter Biden, saying the story should not have been blocked.
“I thought it was a mistake for Twitter to take down some of this stuff about Hunter Biden, or Facebook to do that,” Khanna said during an interview with Joe Lonsdale on the American Optimist podcast while promoting his book “Dignity in a Digital Age: Making Tech Work for All of Us.”
The New York Post published a story in October 2020 detailing a meeting between Hunter Biden, then-Vice President Joe Biden and a top executive at Ukrainian gas company Burisma in 2015, relying on data recovered from a laptop reportedly belonging to Hunter. Shortly after the story was published, Twitter blocked users from sharing the link and suspended accounts that attempted to tweet it out.Read More
Facebook suspended the account of Republican Georgia Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene for 24 hours on Monday, one day after Twitter permanently suspended her account over repeated violations of COVID-19 misinformation policies.
Greene posted on Telegram that Facebook blocked her from posting or commenting for 24 hours for not abiding by the company’s “Community Standards” on Monday.
“This is because you previously posted something that didn’t follow our Community Standards,” Facebook’s temporary restriction announcement said, according to Greene.Read More
Democratic state lawmakers are proposing laws to curb “misinformation” on social media sites and other online platforms, mirroring efforts by Democrats in Congress.
New York state Sen. Brad Hoylman announced a bill on Monday aimed at reducing the spread of misinformation and harmful content online.Read More
Twitter permanently suspended the personal account of Republican Georgia Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene over repeated violations of its COVID-19 misinformation policy, the company confirmed early Sunday.
Greene’s personal account, @mtgreenee, was no longer active Sunday morning, and it has been labeled with an “account suspended” notice. Greene’s official government account, @RepMTG, is still active.
When reached for comment, Twitter confirmed Greene’s account was suspended, and the company said she committed “repeated” violations of its policy on COVID-19 misinformation.Read More
Instagram unveiled a host of child safety measures and parental controls for its app just one day before chief executive Adam Mosseri is due to testify in Congress.
“At Instagram, we’ve been working for a long time to keep young people safe on the app,” Mosseri wrote in a blog post. “As part of that work, today we’re announcing some new tools and features to keep young people even safer on Instagram.”
The new features include controls allowing parents to set time limits for their kids’ use of Instagram, providing resources on how Instagram works and options allowing kids to notify parents if they report another user. Instagram will also launch its “Take A Break” feature, which asks users to take some time away from Instagram if they’ve been scrolling for a while.Read More
Republican lawmakers are raising concerns that Twitter’s new Chief Executive Parag Agrawal may threaten conservative political speech on the social media platform.
Agrawal, Twitter’s former chief technology officer who was announced as CEO following Jack Dorsey’s decision to step down early Monday, has previously highlighted the perceived threat of online “misinformation,” calling to depart from free speech considerations in favor of other concerns in an interview with MIT Technology Review in November 2020.
“Our role is not to be bound by the First Amendment, but our role is to serve a healthy public conversation and our moves are reflective of things that we believe lead to a healthier public conversation,” Agrawal said. “The kinds of things that we do about this is, focus less on thinking about free speech, but thinking about how the times have changed.”
Agrawal previously oversaw development efforts on Bluesky, a decentralized social media platform intended to “better control abusive and misleading information.”Read More
A bipartisan coalition of state attorneys general launched a probe into Instagram on Thursday to examine whether the company violated state-level consumer protection laws.
The states are investigating whether Meta (formerly known as Facebook), which owns Instagram, promoted the image-sharing platform “to children and young adults” despite being aware of its negative effects, according to statements from the attorneys general. The probe cites internal Facebook communications and research leaked by former Facebook employee Frances Haugen and published by The Wall Street Journal showing Meta was aware that use of Instagram could contribute to body image and mental health issues among teens.
“When social media platforms treat our children as mere commodities to manipulate for longer screen time engagement and data extraction, it becomes imperative for state attorneys general to engage our investigative authority under our consumer protection laws,” Republican Nebraska Attorney General Doug Peterson said in a statement.Read More
Training materials for the Springfield, Mo., school district told teachers they could be engaging in white supremacy simply by insisting the English language be used or calling police on a black suspect, according to records released under a freedom of information request.
The materials, provided to Just the News, include a 40-plus slide training deck that proclaimed its goal was to train teachers on how to address “systemic racism and xenophobia” in the school district and to understand the difference between oppressors and the oppressed. Critics say the slide deck is part of a larger Critical Race Theory curriculum that parents are increasingly rejecting.
It included an “oppression matrix” that identified privileged social groups capable of oppression as including “white people,” “male assigned at birth,” “gender conforming CIS men and women,” “heterosexuals,” “rich, upper-class people” and “Protestants.”Read More
A scholar at a Virginia university is not backing down as students and faculty seek to get her fired for a tweet she posted criticizing DC Comics’ new bisexual Superman character.
“Regrettably, this has all gone too far,” Sophia Nelson, scholar in residence at Christopher Newport University in Newport News, Virginia, says in an open letter to the university community dated Friday.
“I read the student petition against me in a Fox News article posted on Wednesday, October 27th,” Nelson writes, “and was devastated to read these words: ‘Our community is hurt and disappointed in the way this university has dealt with the homophobic and racist statements of Professor Nelson.’”Read More
Facebook lobbyists are struggling to meet with lawmakers, Politico reported, as the tech giant faces congressional scrutiny and negative press surrounding its business practices.
Several lawmakers’ offices are ignoring Facebook’s policy team and even refusing to meet with lobbyists, Politico reported. Several congressional aides told the outlet that recent news reports on Facebook’s business practices, including its knowledge of how its platform affects teen users and its amplification of “misinformation,” have contributed to lawmakers’ hostile attitudes.
“Mark Zuckerberg has done more to polarize the country probably than anyone else and yet despite that, the antipathy towards him is one of the most bipartisan things that remains in the country,” a Democratic House staffer told Politico.Read More
Tucker Carlson on Wednesday night played a brief trailer for his three-part documentary looking at the events of January 6. “Patriot Purge” will premiere on Fox Nation, the network’s streaming service, on November 1.
Clips hint that the film compares the prosecution of Capitol protesters and anyone associated with the events of January 6 to the initial war on terror, a wholly legitimate comparison that my reporting confirms. For example, as I explained in April, Director of National Intelligence Avril Haines issued a report earlier this year warning “domestic violent extremists” pose a heightened threat to the nation. Not one for subtlety, Haines included a sketch of the U.S. Capitol in the document; House Republicans at the time blasted Haines for working outside her legal authority—the intelligence community is supposed to hunt foreign terrorists, not MAGA-supporting meemaws—to target American citizens.
Unfortunately, most Americans are unaware that the Biden regime, with a big assist from the news media, is indeed conducting a domestic war on terror aimed at the political Right.Read More