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Author Topic: What to do about social media corporations?  (Read 8974 times)

Kyle Aaron

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Re: What to do about social media corporations?
« Reply #60 on: January 02, 2022, 11:38:43 PM »
I would simply change the law so that the behaviour of the social media corporation, search engine or whatever determines whether they are treated as a platform or a publisher. The key distinction is behaviour: a publisher edits, a platform - like the old town corner - doesn't edit.

If you are a platform, you only remove or edit material which breaks laws like child pornography, etc. You are not liable for non-criminal stuff like defamation, etc appearing on your platform. If I stand up in a bar and yell that all Jews must die (shortly before necking myself), the pub owner is not legally responsible for my hate speech. If I get into a brawl and he doesn't direct his bouncers to stop the brawl, he may be legally responsible for the assaults occurring.

If you are a publisher, you may remove or edit material for non-criminal law reasons, such as "misinformation", "hate speech", etc. You are now liable for defamation, etc, just as a newspaper would be if it'd published that same post as a Letter To The Editor.

Which you are treated as depends on your behaviour. So for example Facebook removes people's posts or edits them, and is thus behaving as a publisher. Thus if I go onto Facebook and say that John Kim is a storygamer and he sues me for defamation, Facebook would be a co-defendant in that suit.

I'd set those guidelines and then leave it up to the respective companies which they want to be. I suspect Facebook would not be able to decide, and would just collapse. Google would remain a platform, and would refrain from the editorial actions it's ventured into recently.
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Ghostmaker

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Re: What to do about social media corporations?
« Reply #61 on: January 03, 2022, 04:13:03 PM »
I would simply change the law so that the behaviour of the social media corporation, search engine or whatever determines whether they are treated as a platform or a publisher. The key distinction is behaviour: a publisher edits, a platform - like the old town corner - doesn't edit.

If you are a platform, you only remove or edit material which breaks laws like child pornography, etc. You are not liable for non-criminal stuff like defamation, etc appearing on your platform. If I stand up in a bar and yell that all Jews must die (shortly before necking myself), the pub owner is not legally responsible for my hate speech. If I get into a brawl and he doesn't direct his bouncers to stop the brawl, he may be legally responsible for the assaults occurring.

If you are a publisher, you may remove or edit material for non-criminal law reasons, such as "misinformation", "hate speech", etc. You are now liable for defamation, etc, just as a newspaper would be if it'd published that same post as a Letter To The Editor.

Which you are treated as depends on your behaviour. So for example Facebook removes people's posts or edits them, and is thus behaving as a publisher. Thus if I go onto Facebook and say that John Kim is a storygamer and he sues me for defamation, Facebook would be a co-defendant in that suit.

I'd set those guidelines and then leave it up to the respective companies which they want to be. I suspect Facebook would not be able to decide, and would just collapse. Google would remain a platform, and would refrain from the editorial actions it's ventured into recently.
In theory this is how section 230 is supposed to work. The problem is that there's no real way to enforce it (and the perils of having actual enforcement are not lost on me).

Kyle Aaron

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Re: What to do about social media corporations?
« Reply #62 on: January 03, 2022, 04:58:37 PM »
That's why I prefer my earlier suggestion of giving people ownership of their personal data. Currently even in places where there are decent privacy laws, we can keep our personal data secret, or we can give it away - but we can't sell it. Once someone else has got it they can sell it, though.

This is rather like allowing us to refuse sex, have it for free with someone, and allow others to pimp us out - but not allow us to sell our sex services. It makes no sense, except for the pimp.
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Mistwell

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Re: What to do about social media corporations?
« Reply #63 on: January 03, 2022, 04:58:52 PM »
What we should do?  Break them up as monopolies



How?

Phone companies were broken up into regions. I guess we could do that, but I don't see how that addresses the issue. OK, so now you have a Western, Southern, Northern, and Eastern Facebook (or whatever). How does that change the issue we're discussing of what speech is and is not allowed on Facebook?

Or a court could order firewalls between Instagram, WhatsApp and Messenger and its main social networking service. But that again doesn't address the issue.

How does addressing the monopoly aspect of Facebook alter the speech aspect of Facebook?


Daztur

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Re: What to do about social media corporations?
« Reply #64 on: January 04, 2022, 01:49:39 AM »
looks like our own beloved Admin has the solution to the social media problem. He's trying to share it on Twitter, but apparently, a noted constitutional lawyer is having a hard time understanding Pundit's explanation of the First Amendment. Check it out! You'll laugh! You'll cry (from laughing so hard)!

https://twitter.com/KasimirUrbanski/status/1477775943326482432

The First Amendment specifically is a lot different than Free Speech more generally. If Pundy banned me because I called him an asshole that would limit my free speech but that wouldn't violate the First Amendment.

You get a lot of bizarrely narrow definition of Free Speech in some corners were NOTHING that doesn't specifically violate the First Amendment has anything to do with Free Speech.
Yes, that happens a lot. And it doesn't seem to be possible to make any of those people realize that freedom of speech might be more than a single law passed in 1789.

What happens is this basically:
1. "Everyone" knows "free speech" is good.
2. Many people don't actually want free speech.
3. So they definite free speech very narrowly so all of the bits they don't like are excluded.

The thing is NOBODY is a free speech absolutist. Pundy takes free speech very seriously but he bans people for anti-Semitism among other things. A lot of the powers that be on the internet cracked down HARD on pro-anorexia sites a while back and nobody complained. You're going to kick people out of your home for mouthing off about your family. Free speech is an important thing but it's not the only important thing and can be weighed differently against other things depending on what you value.
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Pat

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Re: What to do about social media corporations?
« Reply #65 on: January 04, 2022, 02:13:46 AM »
You're going to kick people out of your home for mouthing off about your family.
That's not what free speech is about to me. Free speech is public discourse, not private. A home is where you can shut the doors, including shutting out other people. You can see this in the attempts to weaponize "it's a private company" by the exact same people who talk with hate about corporate personhood, as if it were really a thing. The essential problem with that being that the new public spaces are privately owned, and there are no common carrier rules.

Free speech at the personal level is about listening to other people, actively seeking out different views as well as just passively listening. Free speech at the social level is about carving out spaces where no voices are erased just because some people don't want anyone else to listen. These included public squares, classic New England town meetings, libraries, and the the internet -- at least the dream version of the 1990s.

These spaces need to be carved out because they're not the default. The default is the home, the private sanctuary. Public spaces aren't that; they're not sanctuaries. They're rough and tumble, and voices survive not because they're protected but because people listen to them.

Free speech is pushing back against the attempt to co-op everything as private. It's about ensuring these spaces exist, and are broad, vast, and are everywhere they need to be. It's about ensuring they exist in politics, in education, on the radio, and across forums.

Shrieking Banshee

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Re: What to do about social media corporations?
« Reply #66 on: January 04, 2022, 10:15:33 AM »
The spirit of the law with free speech I find is more important then the raw rules. The idea is that if you don't like listening to other opinions, then you at least tolerate them having a platform.

HappyDaze

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Re: What to do about social media corporations?
« Reply #67 on: January 04, 2022, 10:28:37 AM »
The spirit of the law with free speech I find is more important then the raw rules. The idea is that if you don't like listening to other opinions, then you at least tolerate them having a platform.
Of course, many still have the Not in My (Digital) Backyard view about the platforms that host the opposing views. Depending on how marginal the view, there may be few with means and desire to offer a platform, which, unlike a true public space, are all controlled by someone.

Shrieking Banshee

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Re: What to do about social media corporations?
« Reply #68 on: January 04, 2022, 10:56:55 AM »
Of course, many still have the Not in My (Digital) Backyard view about the platforms that host the opposing views. Depending on how marginal the view, there may be few with means and desire to offer a platform, which, unlike a true public space, are all controlled by someone.

Which is what I mean by 'spirit'. Legally do whatever, but ethics wise is something else.

And I have defended free speech from those that would want to deplatform opinions I disagree with (even on this site), so I have a high priority view on freedom of speech. My only exception is direct (not implied) calls to violence, and I guess defamation is a bit of a gray zone.

Pat

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Re: What to do about social media corporations?
« Reply #69 on: January 04, 2022, 11:36:09 AM »
My only exception is direct (not implied) calls to violence, and I guess defamation is a bit of a gray zone.
Those American colonists can complain about taxes and unrepresentative government all they want, but anyone who speaks out in support of the violent insurrection in Boston harbor must suffer the consequences!

Shrieking Banshee

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Re: What to do about social media corporations?
« Reply #70 on: January 04, 2022, 11:45:05 AM »
Those American colonists can complain about taxes and unrepresentative government all they want, but anyone who speaks out in support of the violent insurrection in Boston harbor must suffer the consequences!
If your planning a violent revolution, then the base idea is you don't care about the current governing set of rules anyway.
Like...yeah no shit if you run a government, and then there are people planning on violently overthrowing you....Well unless your a denmark pussy king who just steps down, your gonna do something about it.

Pat

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Re: What to do about social media corporations?
« Reply #71 on: January 04, 2022, 01:36:24 PM »
Like...yeah no shit if you run a government, and then there are people planning on violently overthrowing you....Well unless your a denmark pussy king who just steps down, your gonna do something about it.
You just made the argument that all forms of government are illegitimate. They're not based on the idea of a social contract and voluntarily people agreeing to give up some of their rights in order to make society work better. The privileges of the governing will be defended by force.

Shrieking Banshee

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Re: What to do about social media corporations?
« Reply #72 on: January 04, 2022, 01:54:28 PM »
You just made the argument that all forms of government are illegitimate.
I think government is generally bad, but we live in a generally bad universe. Any choice taken or not - taken will always leave some people unhappy for reasonable reasons.

Even anarcho-capitalism would eventually form into what is effectively a government. Due to mankinds desires for stability and the addictive nature of power.

Pat

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Re: What to do about social media corporations?
« Reply #73 on: January 04, 2022, 03:15:37 PM »
You just made the argument that all forms of government are illegitimate.
I think government is generally bad, but we live in a generally bad universe. Any choice taken or not - taken will always leave some people unhappy for reasonable reasons.

Even anarcho-capitalism would eventually form into what is effectively a government. Due to mankinds desires for stability and the addictive nature of power.
I don't think anarcho-capitalism is functional. The more successful anarchies have been more in the Conquest of Bread camp, and even those don't scale well.

But to put checks on government, we need to remove the rose-colored glasses and acknowledge that government is based on force, that inflation is taxation, that taxation is theft, that power corrupts, that first step toward tyranny is centralizing power, and all the other negatives that are ignored by big government statists. That will give people the intellectual grounding to spot the excesses of government and restrain them. Instead, we live in a world where many people unironically say "someone [the government] should do something", under the naive assumption that just throwing money at something or getting the right people in power can fix any problem.

Shrieking Banshee

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Re: What to do about social media corporations?
« Reply #74 on: January 04, 2022, 03:20:40 PM »
Instead, we live in a world where many people unironically say "someone [the government] should do something", under the naive assumption that just throwing money at something or getting the right people in power can fix any problem.

I mean your preaching to the choir here. Which is why I said I have to compromise my principle of 'Free speech all the time' with 'Except calls to violence and defamation', because reality isn't perfect. If it means curtailing a rightous revolution, thats a price I see as acceptable to curtail things like mobs of people just using social influence to end the lives of others.