Zuckerberg To Reinstate Trump On Facebook And Instagram

Former President Donald Trump

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Following an announcement in January by Meta, formerly Facebook, that it would decide whether or not to reinstate former President Donald Trump "in the coming weeks," Mark Zuckerberg has reportedly decided to end Trump's suspension from both Facebook and Instagram.

Trump's reinstatement comes 2 years after Facebook and all other major social media platforms (Instagram, Twitter, Youtube, etc.) banned him in response to the January 6 riot at the Capitol. Meta's President of Global Affairs, Nick Clegg, announced that Trump will be able to resume using the platforms "in the coming weeks" and also indicated that there will be "new guardrails in place to deter repeat offenses."

Those purported "guardrails" are to include "heightened penalties for repeat offenses - penalties which will apply to other public figures whose accounts are reinstated from suspensions related to civil unrest under our updated protocol," according to a statement from Clegg posted on the company's website.

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Clegg added, "In the event that Mr. Trump posts further violating content, the content will be removed, and he will be suspended for between one month and two years, depending on the severity of the violation."

In response to the announcement from Meta, Trump posted a statement on his Truth Social account stating, "FACEBOOK, which has lost Billions of Dollars in value since "deplatforming" your favorite President, me, has just announced that they are reinstating my account. Such a thing should never again happen to a sitting President or anybody else who is not deserving of retribution! THANK YOU TO TRUTH SOCIAL FOR DOING SUCH AN INCREDIBLE JOB. YOUR GROWTH IS OUTSTANDING, AND FUTURE UNLIMITED!!!"

Meta banned Trump from Facebook and Instagram following the riot on Capitol Hill on January 6, despite his post calling for protestors to "peacefully" gather at the Capitol and then calling for them to "go home." Zuckerberg had initially said that Meta's semi-independent Oversight Board deemed the ban appropriate and said that it would remain in place for the rest of Trump's term as president.

The Oversight Board said of its findings, "The Board found that teh two posts by Mr. Trump on January 6 severely violated Facebook's Community Standards and Instagram's Community Guidelines. 'We love you. You're very special' in the first post and 'great patriots' and 'remember this day forever' in the second post violated Facebook's rules prohibiting praise or support of people engaged in violence."

Clegg had later stated that Trump's account would be reinstated if "experts" could accurately "assess whether the risk to public safety has receded."

In June 2021, Clegg said, "We will evaluate external factors, including instances of violence, restrictions on peaceful assembly, and other markers of civil unrest. If we determine that there is still a serious risk to public safety, we will extend the restriction for a set period of time and continue to re-evaluate until that risk has receded."

"There will be a strict set of rapidly escalating sanctions that will be triggered if Mr. Trump commits further violations in the future, up to and including permanent removal of his pages and accounts," Clegg added.

Trump, insulted by the decision wrote, "Facebook's ruling is an insult to the record-setting 75M people, plus many others, who voted for us in the 2020 Rigged Presidential Election."

"They shouldn't be allowed to get away with this censoring and silencing, and ultimately, we will win. Out Country can't take this abuse anymore!" Trump concluded.

It is unclear whether or not Trump will utilize his Facebook and Instagram accounts going forward once he has been reinstated.

Biden Administration Urged Facebook To Censor Tucker Carlson

Tucker Carlson

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Thanks to Louisiana Attorney General Jeff Landry's multi-state censorship lawsuit against the Biden administration, new files have been released that show the White House requesting that Facebook censor Fox News' Tucker Carlson for criticizing Covid-19 vaccines.

On April 14, 2021, Rob Flaherty, the White House Director of Digital Strategy, sent an email to a Facebook employee saying, "Since we've been on the phone - the top post about vaccines today is Tucker Carlson saying they don't work. Yesterday it was Tomi Lahren saying she won't take one."

The released Facebook emails are just one of many such revelations that have come out recently about the extent and depth of collusion between Biden's White House and tech companies in the attempt to suppress doubt and debate regarding the administration's covid policies and vaccine mandates.

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The emails were obtained through a lawsuit Landry filed on behalf of Louisiana and Missouri against the Biden administration, alleging that it colluded with tech companies to suppress Americans' First Amendment rights.

According to the emails, Flaherty wrote, "The is exactly why I want to know what 'Reduction' actually looks like - if 'reduction' means 'pumping our most vaccine hesitant audience with Tucker Carlson saying it doesn't work,' then...I'm not sure it's reduction!"

The emails show that an employee promptly responded and reassured Flaherty that Facebook was "running this down."

In another email, Facebook told the White House that it would also censor Robert Kennedy, Jr. who has also been outspokenly skeptical of the vaccine.

The emails were released prior to the Twitter Files, which revealed that Pfizer and the Biden administration had used the same lobbyist to pressure Faceboook to censor 'misinformation' and doubt about the vaccines.

The lawsuit regarding the emails is currently working its way through the legal process in the District Court for the Western District of Louisiana.

Most Americans Support Elon Musk's Effort To Make Twitter "More Free And Transparent"

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According to a new Trafalgar Group Poll that was taken of 1,085 likely general election voters between November 30 and December 3, a majority of 52.3 percent support Musk's endeavor to make Twitter a "more free and transparent platform."

While 31.3 percent do not agree with Musk's efforts to bring free speech back to Twitter, 16.3 percent of those polled are unsure how they feel about the changes. If the "not sure" option is withdrawn, then those that support making Twitter more transparent rise to 62.6 percent, with only 37.4 not supporting the move.

Almost 60 percent of Democrats polled do not support bringing transparency and free speech to Twitter, while Republicans overwhelmingly support the shift, with a solid 84.8 percent supporting musk. Most voters with no party affiliation side with Republicans, with 54.2 percent saying that they support the Twitter policy changes.

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The results of the poll were released after Musk released Twitter files that the previous leadership kept out of public view that prove that Twitter previously censored material, interfered in elections, and attempted to quash the Hunter Biden laptop story.

While Twitter's future is still uncertain as Musk tries to save the troubled social media company, it is clear that most people support Musk's decision to bring free speech and transparency to Twitter as he attempts to make it the public town square society has been lacking.

Ireland Considers Criminalizing Hateful Material

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In what appears to be a blatant attack on free speech, Ireland is considering passing the Criminal Justice (Incitement to Violence or Hatred and Hate Offences) Bill 2022 which would, among other things, criminalize the possession of material the government deems hateful. In addition to criminalizing the possession of odious material, the law would also "provide for an offence of condoning, denying or grossly trivialising genocide, war crimes, crimes against humanity and crimes against peace." The Bill is also intended to fight "forms and expressions of racism and xenophobia."

One of the main concerns of the Bill is the complete lack of precise definitions of the specific offenses it refers to. Without clear definitions, the law can only be ambiguously enforced and easily misinterpreted.

In language that seems to have come more from the dystopian novel, 1984, than from lawmakers, the Bill would allow for the prosecution of anyone "preparing or possessing material likely to incite violence or hatred against persons on account of their protected characteristics." While the intent of the law is to prevent hate crimes, not allowing people to possess certain materials more closely resembles the censorship of ideas, free thought, and literature.

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While criminalizing hate speech may be done by governments with the best intentions, it opens a doorway for far more serious censorship issues to creep in. Ireland's new criminal justice law would allow a judge to order the search of someone's home based only on the sworn statement of a police officer that they have "reasonable" grounds to suspect illegal material may be in the person's home. Without clear-cut definitions of the crimes the law is meant to prosecute and search warrants that are allowed to be issued on suspicions and sworn statements, without evidence, there is no way to adequately enforce Ireland's proposed Bill. The passage of the new law could be the beginning of the end for free speech in Ireland as well as free thought.

Free Speech Returns To Twitter - Musk Reduced Employees With Access To Censorship Tools From Hundreds To 15

Elon Musk

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In addition to removing Twitter's CEO, CFO, and the head of its legal department last week, Elon Musk has also reduced the number of employees with access to Twitter's censorship tools from hundreds to 15 according to people familiar with the situation. The move comes a week ahead of the highly anticipated midterm elections on November 8th.

Musk has frozen many employees' ability to censor or moderate content and has limited their ability to enforce other policies as well. According to Bloomberg, much of the Twitter staff no longer has the ability to "alter or penalize accounts that break rules around misleading information, offensive posts and hate speech."

It has been reported by Bloomberg that the reason for freezing employees' access to certain parts of the software code is to prevent them from making changes to the platform during the transition to new ownership under Musk.

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In his first week as the owner of the social media platform, Musk has already focused his attention on many of the company's questionable policies and rules and has requested that they be reviewed by the team. One such policy that is being called into question is Twitter's misinformation policy.

The policy as it currently stands penalizes posts that contain misinformation about certain topics including election outcomes and information about Covid-19. Just last month this policy was responsible for Twitter blocking the Florida Surgeon General's warning about certain Covid-19 vaccines. Musk is looking to make the policy more specific.

Musk has also requested a review of the hateful conduct policy, specifically the portion that states that accounts can be penalized for "targeted misgendering or deadnaming of transgender individuals."

While Musk focuses on bringing changes to Twitter, what is left of the staff has been focused on responding to what Twitter's head of safety and integrity, Yoel Roth, has called a "focused, short-term trolling campaign." Roth said, "Since Saturday, we've been focused on addressing the surge in hateful conduct on Twitter. We've made measurable progress, removing more than 1,500 accounts and reducing impressions on this content to nearly zero."

With the November midterms a week away, Musk's takeover of Twitter and the restriction of employees' moderating and censorship privileges, couldn't have come at a better time. It will be interesting to see how the return of free speech to Twitter will influence the election over the coming week.

Elon Musk Takes Over Twitter And Cleans House - CEO, CFO, And Legal Head Fired

Elon Musk

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Elon Musk and Twitter closed a deal on Thursday with Musk purchasing the social media company for roughly $44 billion or $54.20 per share. The Musk-Twitter deal has been in the works for months and almost fell apart a couple of times during the tumultuous negotiations.

A video posted to Musk's Twitter account shows him carrying a sink into Twitter's San Francisco headquarters on Wednesday, a day ahead of the court-ordered deadline for the two parties to finalize Musk's purchase of the company. "Let that sink in," Musk wrote on Twitter with the video.

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Amid Musk's takeover of Twitter, he fired CEO Parag Agrawal, CFO Ned Segal, and the Head of Trust, Safety, and Legal Vijaya Gadde, who has been the main source of the censorship that led Musk to the decision to take the company private. Sources told CNBC, "Twitter CEO Parag Agrawal and finance chief Ned Segal have left the company's San Francisco headquarters and will not be returning."

Musk was seen at Twitter's headquarters this week talking with employees in the cafe. A meeting with the full staff is expected today. As for the lawsuit that Twitter filed, it will be dismissed now that an agreement has been reached.

Kanye West to Buy Conservative Social Media App Parler

Kanye West

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Amid backlash for anti-semetic comments that got Ye (formerly known as Kanye West) kicked off of Instagram and Twitter last week, the rapper has what Parler is calling "an agreement in principle" to purchase the conservative social media app.

In a statement released by Ye, he said that he is purchasing Parler to ensure that people, "have the right to freely express ourselves."

Parlement Technologies, Parler's parent company published a press release Monday stating that the company has "an agreement in principle" to sell Parler to Ye. Neither Parlement Technologies nor the rapper has disclosed the dollar amount of the transaction.

Parler's press release said, "The proposed acquisition will assure Parler a future role in creating an uncancelable ecosystem where all voices are welcome."

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While both Twitter and Instagram have blocked Ye's recent anti-semetic posts citing violation of their policies, Parlement Technologies CEO, George Farmer, is welcoming Ye's purchase of Parler saying, "The deal will change the world, and change the way the world thinks about free speech. Ye is making a groundbreaking move into the free speech media space and will never have to fear being removed from social media again. Once again, Ye proves that he is one step ahead of the legacy media narrative. Parlement will be honored to help him achieve his goals."

Parler has not been without its own troubles. The app became available in Google's app store last month and returned to the Apple store last year after previously being dropped by both companies.

Senator Cruz Gives In To Democrats On Journalism Competition And Preservation Act

Gage Skidmore from Surprise, AZ, United States of America, CC BY-SA 2.0 https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0, via Wikimedia Commons

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In an unexpected turn of events Wednesday evening, Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX) circulated an updated amendment regarding the Journalism Competition and Preservation Act (JCPA) which was a modified version of the amendment he had previously distributed the week before to the Senate Judiciary Committee. The updated amendment contained revised language that removed things that Democrat Amy Klobuchar had previously stated she could not support. The change in language is likely to allow the bill to advance out of the Senate Judiciary Committee and be considered by the full Senate.

The bill would allow media organizations to band together to negotiate deals with Big Tech. Many Republicans are against the proposed bill because it lacks a favored nations clause that would mandate fair negotiations for all media organizations.

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Several aides on both sides of the JCPA debate confirmed that Cruz gave in to Klobachur and agreed to change the language of the amendment to allow it to pass through the Judiciary Committee. When asked about the aides' confirmation of the agreement, Cruz's spokesperson told Breitbart, "Senator Cruz is a fierce defender of the First Amendment and free speech and he will always fight to prevent Americans from being censored or silenced."

Both Senator Cruz and Senator John Kennedy (R-LA) argue that the bill would help conservatives fight Big Tech. Senator Kennedy told the Daily Caller News Foundation, "We have reached an agreement that clarifies what the bill was designed to do: give local news outlets a real seat at the negotiating table and bar the tech firms from throttling, filtering, suppressing, or curating content. The only reason I can see for parties to oppose this bill is that they have a problem either with healthy market competition or free speech."

The JCPA is set to go before the Senate Judiciary Committee for consideration for the third week in a row on Thursday where it is likely to pass through to be considered by the full Senate due to the revised amendment.

Episode 9 - Reclaiming The Republic-Gettr CEO Jason Miller

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Hosts L Todd Wood and Christine Dolan speak with the CEO of Getter, Jason Miller on the Twitter saga, and free speech social media.

This interview is part of a series — American Conversations – Reclaiming the Republic.

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Leaked Video Of Elon Musk’s Address To Twitter Employees About ‘Essential’ Nature Of Free Speech, Voting Republican, And ‘Evolving’ Twitter

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[SAN FRANCISCO – JUNE 16, 2022] Project Veritas has published another recording of an internal Twitter all hands meeting wherein Elon Musk addressed thousands of employees for the first time since news broke of his plans to acquire the company.

On the call, Musk described his affinity for Twitter and said the platform was best for “getting a message out” but noted that he was concerned about the platform as it currently stands, reiterating previous statements he’s made about bots, spam, and censorship.

“I think it's essential to have free speech,” Musk said in response to a question about his highly publicized goal to bring free speech to the platform.

When pressed about what that might mean in the context of animal abuse, sexual content and offensive tweets, Musk maintained his stance. 

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“I think there's also, there's freedom of speech and freedom of reach, so I think people should be allowed to say…pretty outrageous things that are within the balance, the law, but, but then they don't, you know, get amplified,” Musk added. 

Throughout the call, Musk spoke highly about Twitter but emphasized his vision for expanding the tech giant to be inclusive of more users.

“I think an important goal for Twitter would be to try to include as, as much of the country, as much of the world as possible,” Musk said speaking to employees including CEO, Parag Agrawal.

On the call, Musk was asked about a wide range of matters including his political leanings, his plans for layoffs and whether remote employees would be required to return to the office.

Musk described his political views as “moderate” noting that he traditionally has voted Democrat but voted Republican for the first time in his life, voting for Congressional Candidate, Mayra Flores, in Texas. He said he believes most of the world favors moderate politics but that the far left and right should be able to voice their frustrations on Twitter.

At one point, Musk was asked if he would be taking over CEO duties of the company. Musk’s answer was that he “wants to make sure the product evolves rapidly.”

In response to the Project Veritas’ leak of the company-wide zoom, Musk commented “exactly.”

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