If you have a Twitter account, have you ever been suspended? How about limited, meaning that because of some minor offense, only your followers are able yo see your tweets? Shadowbanned? That’s when you tweet, and then even many of your followers do not see anything from you? Me? No to all of the above. The reason I bring this up is that it seems whenever I log into Twitter I see messages from people that they’re back from a suspension, or believe they’re being shadowbanned or some other message, maybe from a follower, that somone has received a permanent ban.
In the past I used to see these from those that at least claim to be conservatives. Now, I see a few more, at least weekly, that are liberal or progressive in their politics. I wonder if Twitter got the message that they at least appeared to target conservative voices? I’ve always doubted that presumption, because I follow a lot of conservatives, I happen to see more messages about suspensions from, you guessed it, conservatives. I do happen to follow quite a few liberals, more today than in the past, and maybe that’s why I’m seeing what was once a charge of bias against conservatives, occurring to others as well.
I believe that these social media platforms, all of them, have a growing fear of government regulation. The rising voices, on either side of the political spectrum are now saying that access to these platforms are a civil right. Is it? Well, I’ve written in the [past] supporting this idea. All of these platforms, Twitter, Facebook, Youtube, Instagram, etc. are the new town square where people may discuss politics, social policy, religion, whatever they want as long as they don’t incite others to violence. None of us are forced to listen to anything we don;’t want to hear, and no one is forced to participate on any social media platform.
These platforms, thought, want us to participate. They invite us to join, at no cost to ourselves other than some time spent. We create accounts, and then content that others may or may not enjoy consuming. It seems however, that the content created, doesn’t seem to belong to the creator once it’s posted. That’s why Twitter, Facebook, Youtube, may flag certain posts, demonetize (on Youtube) at their discretion.
I’m beginning to see more and more complaints via Twitter from creators of content being demonetized or even taken down due to some sort of amorphous violation. That has to be frustrating. And don’t get me started with Patreon and Paypal who’ve decided to enter into the arena of what content may be funded through their platforms or not.The bottom line seems to be that all of these platforms are the arbiters of what content may be displayed and what cannot be shared with subscribers. Is it really worth the effort anymore? I’ve been hearing that YouTube is moving more toward corporate creators. I don’t know if this is tue or not, but it seems suspicious that the complaints from individual, independent creators are becoming more common daily.
The reasons a various but all seem to come back to viewpoint on a topic. Don’t agree with the so-called mainstream view on some subject? Expect that content to be pushed to the back of the line, if it’s even allowed to be published. That means for people who earn some or even a substantial part of their income from submissions, that income is inhibited while those that play the game, trend higher. Is government intervention necessary? Maybe, but then whatever laws are passed or regulations imposed need to be carefully thought out with a do no harm mentality. Even as more voices call for some sort of government intervention, careful consideration of what is be asked should take a front seat.