Researcher: Facebook Algorithm Changes Suppressed Journalism

Facebook’s News Feed algorithm determines what users see on its platform – from funny memes to comments from friends. The company regularly updates this algorithm, which can dramatically change what information people consume.

As the 2020 election approaches, there is much public concern that what was dubbed “Russian meddling” in the 2016 presidential election could happen again. But what’s not getting enough attention is the role Facebook’s algorithm changes play, intentionally or not, in that kind of meddling.

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Facebook Plows Record Amount of Cash Into DC Lobbyists as Its Algorithm Changes Crush Media Outlets

by Chris White   Facebook spent several million dollars on lobbying efforts over the past few months as the Silicon Valley company’s algorithm changes continue to wallop small media outlets. The big tech company dropped more than $4 million during the second financial quarter, a record for Facebook up to…

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Senators Cruz and Hawley Urge FTC to Open Investigation Into Big Tech’s Censorship Practices

by Chris White   Two of the country’s staunchest big tech critics are asking the Federal Trade Commission to investigate social media companies’ perceived censorship practices. Facebook, Google and Twitter exercise lots of influence on Americans and they also use their tools to censor some content while amplifying others, Sens.…

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Commentary: ‘High-Skilled Immigrants Act’ Is a Sop to Big Tech

by Rachael Brovard   In a rare moment of bipartisanship last week, Democrats and Republicans joined hands to make a small, but fundamental change to our immigration system. Not to provide critically needed updates or wholesale reforms, but, rather, to toss a sop to the billionaires of Big Tech. Thanks…

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Facebook’s Recent Algorithm Changes Are Laying Waste to Conservative and Liberal Outlets

by Chris White   Facebook recently changed its algorithms to steer focus away from explicitly political content, but now that alteration is laying waste to conservative and liberal outlets. Conservative pundit Deneen Borelli laid into Facebook last week, telling her followers on July 9 that the company’s bias against conservatives…

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Report: Trump’s DOJ Prepares an Antitrust Investigation into Google’s Business Practice

by Chris White   The Department of Justice is preparing an antitrust probe against Google’s search engine and business model, The Wall Street Journal reported Friday night, citing people familiar with the issue. It would be the first such investigation since the Federal Trade Commission conducted a probe of Google…

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Trump 2020 Advisory Board Member Censored on Facebook and She Says It’s No ‘Algorithm Fluke’

by Mary Margaret Olohan   Facebook blocked Trump 2020 campaign advisory board member Jenna Ellis Rives from sharing a screenshot of a tweet by citing “hate speech,” but Rives believes this is a part of a deliberate attempt to censor conservative commentary until it is no longer timely. Rives took…

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Commentary: The Tyranny John Stuart Mill Warned About Is Taking Root on Social Media

by Robert Romano   In John Stuart Mill’s magnum opus, On Liberty, which provides one of the most compelling defenses of free speech in human history, the philosopher warned how a tyranny of the majority could impose censorship that would be “more formidable” than even governmental censorship and that it could “enslav[e]…

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Facebook Is Promoting ISIS Propaganda, Whistleblower Says

by Chris White   Facebook is promoting Islamic State propaganda, a whistleblower alleges in a complaint Thursday to the Securities and Exchange Commission. The social media company is likely violating securities laws prohibiting companies from misleading shareholders and the public, according to a petition filed by the National Whistleblower Center…

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Facebook’s Co-Founder Calls for Government to Break Up Zuckerberg’s Empire

by Chris White   Facebook co-founder Chris Hughes thrashed CEO Mark Zuckerberg Thursday and called on the federal government to break up enormous sections of the massive social media company. “The most problematic aspect of Facebook’s power is Mark’s unilateral control over speech,” Hughes wrote in a New York Times…

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Commentary: The Dawn Of Corporate Totalitarianism

by George Rasley   In a dystopian future envisioned by some of science fiction’s greatest authors, mankind is ruled not by elected leaders or by warlords who came to power through victory in battle. Instead, humans have become the virtual slaves of soulless totalitarian corporations that vie with each other for…

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Conservatives Wrestle Over How to Wallop Big Tech as Facebook Conducts Major Content Purge

by Chris White   Conservatives are considering a slew of bold ideas to hold various social media companies accountable for nixing conservative-leaning content. Some analysts worry conservative activists’ mission to damage big tech sets a bad precedent. One of the best ways to ding Facebook is to make the company…

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Commentary: Deplatforming and Social Media Bias Toward the Left Could Lead to One-Party Rule

by Robert Romano   Thanks to social media and big tech companies, finding content on the Internet that you want has never been easier. Want to find your friends and family online? Log onto Facebook. Want to see what opinion leaders or celebrities are up to? Check out Twitter. Want…

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Facebook Bans Several Personalities for Hate Speech

The hugely popular social media site Facebook has banned Nation of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan, right-wing conspiracy theorist Alex Jones and several others for hate speech. Facebook said Thursday that the individuals violated its policy against instigating violence. “Individuals and organizations who spread hate or attack or call for the…

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Facebook ‘Unintentionally’ Uploaded Email Contacts of 1.5 Million Users

Facebook Inc said on Wednesday it may have “unintentionally uploaded” email contacts of 1.5 million new users since May 2016, in what seems to be the latest privacy-related issue faced by the social media company. In March, Facebook had stopped offering email password verification as an option for people who…

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Facebook Shakes Up Board, Ousts Exec Who Once Threatened Peter Thiel for Supporting Trump

by Chris White   Netflix CEO Reed Hastings will not be renominated to Facebook’s board of directors when the members meet in May for the company’s annual stockholder’s meeting, Facebook announced Friday night. The move comes less than three years after Hastings told fellow board member Peter Thiel that he intended to…

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Blackburn Calls on Tech Giants to Embrace First Amendment and Use Their Powers Responsibly

“Its time for tech companies like Google and Facebook to start embracing the spirit of the First Amendment,” U.S. Sen. Marsha Blackburn (R-TN) told the Senate Judiciary Committee on Wednesday. The senator made the remarks during a hearing titled, “Stifling Free Speech: Technological Censorship and the Public Discourse.” Video of…

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Here’s What Facebook And Google Did Not Discuss During Hearing on White Nationalism

by Chris White   Google and Facebook executives were grilled Tuesday over their inability to govern white nationalism on their platforms, but they gave few answers about why their algorithms are dinging conservative content. Neil Potts, Facebook’s director of public policy, and Alexandria Walden, counsel for free expression and human…

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Blackburn, Klobuchar Team Up to Ask FTC Investigate Online Platforms Over Privacy, Antitrust Concerns

U.S. Sens. Marsha Blackburn (R-TN) and Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) on Monday called for a Federal Trade Commission investigation into online platforms over privacy concerns, data security and antitrust violations. Blackburn tweeted, “Today, @SenAmyKlobuchar and I urged the @FTC to hold tech companies like @Google and @Facebook accountable for securing their…

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When Asked If They Identified as ‘American,’ Many US Corporations Stand Silent

by Tim Pearce   Ten international corporations contacted by The Daily Caller News Foundation got their start in the U.S. but stayed silent when asked if they saw themselves as “American” companies. Nine others responded to TheDCNF’s inquiry by either identifying with their American heritage, obscuring their loyalties or declining to comment…

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Conservatives Call for Tech Giants to Split Ties with SPLC

by Jarrett Stepman   Silicon Valley has enormous power over the flow of information that reaches people around the globe. That’s why it’s vital for Americans to understand how tech giants can manipulate information, either intentionally or unwittingly, to advance a political agenda. Now, 34 conservative leaders are banding together…

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Trump Says He’s Looking Into Reports of Facebook Targeting His Social Media Director

by Chris White   President Donald Trump indicated on Twitter Tuesday that his administration is looking into reports that Facebook censored his social media campaign director. “I will be looking into this!” Trump said before adding the hashtag: #StopTheBias. The president was likely referring to media reports showing that White…

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Two Mothers Launch New Facebook Page to Get Facts About What Is Happening with Williamson County Schools

Two parents with children attending Williamson County Schools have created a Facebook page to help parents organize and get more information about what is going on within Williamson County Schools. Some parents say school system officials keep them in the dark. This, a week after The Tennessee Star revealed teachers…

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Facebook’s New ‘Privacy Vision’ Raises Questions but Offers Few Answers, For Now

Mark Zuckerberg’s abrupt Wednesday declaration of a new ‘privacy vision’ for social networking was for many people a sort of Rorschach test. Looked at one way, the manifesto read as an apology of sorts for Facebook’s history of privacy transgressions, and it suggested that the social network would de-emphasize its…

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Elizabeth Warren Announces Plans to Break Up Facebook and Other Big Tech Firms

by Chris White   Sen. Elizabeth Warren released a plan Friday to wallop big tech companies like Facebook, Google and Amazon as the Massachusetts Democrat works to differentiate herself among fellow presidential candidates. Her proposal would impose new rules on tech companies with $25 billion or more in annual ad…

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Gavin McInnes Sues SPLC for Defamation Over Hate Group Label

Gavin McInnes

by Grace Carr   Political commentator and writer Gavin McInnes filed a Monday lawsuit against a group dedicated to combating intolerance, alleging that its actions have contributed to his loss of employment and slandering on social media. McInnes sued the U.S. Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) for its label of…

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FAKE NEWS: Fact-Checker ‘Snopes’ Botches Nathan Phillips Fact-Check

by Peter Hasson   Snopes, a left-leaning fact-checking website given preferential treatment by both Facebook and Google, flubbed its fact-check of American Indian activist Nathan Phillips’ false claim of being a Vietnam veteran. Phillips shot to national attention after a viral confrontation between him and a group of high school…

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Report Details Nature of Facebook’s Secret Rulebook Governing Global Speech

by Chris White   Facebook’s secretive rulebook regulating how employees censor certain forms of expression contains numerous biases and outright errors, according to internal documents The New York Times obtained Friday. The nearly 1,400-page document shows the Silicon Valley company’s guidebook is riddled with mistakes and is not nimble enough…

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Commentary: Healthcare Will Follow the Dangerous Politicization of Big Tech

by Tho Bishop   As tech executives continue to be grilled in front of Congress, the growing Bernie Sanders-wing of the Democratic Party is preparing to push its misnamed “Medicare for All” into the political mainstream after its political gains in the midterms. While these two stories seem to have…

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New Documentary Shows Viewers the Power of Tech Giants

by Ryan McMaken   The Creepy Line, a new documentary by director M.A. Taylor, is now streaming at Amazon Prime. It provides an interesting and revealing look at how Google and Facebook influence their users’ view of the world, and how the users we often presume to be the customers…

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Commentary: Break Up Google for the Public Good

by Ned Ryun   It’s time for all of us to admit that Alphabet, Inc. is the 21st century equivalent of Ma Bell: it is an almost all-controlling monopoly that restricts consumer choice in order to maximize profit for the company. We all know what Ronald Reagan did to AT&T.…

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Google CEO Splashes Cold Water On a Major Russian Meddling Narrative

by Chris White   Google CEO Sundar Pichai appeared to catch Democratic lawmakers off guard Tuesday after disclosing in a congressional hearing the paltry amount of money Russia spent on ads on the 2016 election. Democratic Rep. Jerry Nadler asked Pichai about the extent to which Russia used Google to interject itself…

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FAKE NEWS: Google and Facebook’s Official Fact Checker ‘Snopes’ Botches Republican-Bashing Fact Check

by Peter Hasson   Snopes, a left-leaning fact-checking website given preferential treatment by Facebook and Google, botched its fact-check of a viral meme that was mocked within political circles for spreading false information. The meme showed a picture of President Donald Trump with Republican lawmakers and members of his administration following…

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Facebook Gave Data on Users’ Friends to Some Firms While Barring Others

Facebook privacy concerns

Facebook Inc let some companies, including Netflix and Airbnb, access users’ lists of friends after it cut off that data for most other apps around 2015, according to documents released on Wednesday by a British lawmaker investigating fake news and social media. The 223 pages of internal communication from 2012…

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Commentary: Tech Giants Didn’t Deserve Public Trust in the First Place

by Zachary Loeb   Amazon may have been expecting lots of public attention when it announced where it would establish its new headquarters – but like many technology companies recently, it probably didn’t anticipate how negative the response would be. In Amazon’s chosen territories of New York and Virginia, local…

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Despite Security Concerns, DHS Official Says No Signs of Successful Election Cybersecurity Attacks

by Gavin Hanson   An official from the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) reportedly said the department had not picked up on any indications of successful election cyberattacks as of early Wednesday morning. The 2018 midterm election came and passed without any official observations of hacking, according to the DHS, The Hill…

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