IT Reshoring News

September 11, 2019

Free Speech Danger: Facebook Caught Patenting its Shadow Ban Technology

The H-1B debate cannot survive without free speech online. Which is just one of many reasons Facebook wants to control your speech. Now they've been caught patenting the "shadow banning" technology they use to silence people...months after they denied shadow banning anyone!

The H-1B problem won't solve itself. Too many powerful tech companies profit from its current state.

The only way to topple this giant is through continued action. Speaking against H-1B visa abuse, petitioning government officials, organizing boycotts of businesses that use H-1Bs at the expense of American workers, and so on.

All this hinges on the American right to free speech and equal treatment on open online platforms.

Facebook wants to take the second part of that away.

It's common knowledge that Facebook engages in forms of censorship among its users. Proof of this activity has remained elusive...until now.

Facebook Denies Shadow Banning, Receives Patent for Shadow Banning – New American (Aug 1, 2019)

Mere months after telling Congress they don't shadow ban users, we find out that...oh, yes, they do! They even want to patent the method they use for doing so.

A "shadow ban" works like this. When you check Facebook, you see posts from people you've followed. When you post to your own Facebook feed, people who've followed you see those posts.

When Facebook shadow bans you, you're still able to post to your own feed. However, nobody else sees the posts. They don't show up on Facebook anymore. Your posts just disappear into a digital void. 

Facebook shows a pattern of banning conservative users—a position Facebook itself opposes. However, the shadow banning practice goes beyond politics. This is flat-out censorship. Silencing free speech. A direct violation of the First Amendment itself.

Facebook wants to tell you how to speak, who to hire, and what IT thinks you can see online. Your preferences don't matter to them. Free speech doesn't matter to them.

"But Facebook is a private company, they can do what they want!"

Not necessarily. Facebook acts as a platform – a "public square" for people to speak. Just like city streets and government offices. This means it must adhere to First Amendment protections.

(Facebook's official legal classification – along with Twitter, Instagram, and other social media – hasn't been fully codified yet. Facebook is fighting like mad to delay or dismiss such a classification effort.)

The best way to stop censorship on topics like H-1B abuse and economic issues? Keep speaking! If Facebook wants to shadow ban you for speaking the truth, then maybe it's time we all dumped Facebook and found a new platform where we can speak freely.


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