• Daniel Ethan Finneran

Big Tech Censorship

President Donald J. Trump, long the bête noire of the “Big Tech Bros”, was first temporarily, and is now permanently banned from the most prominent and well-trafficked social media sites on which, among other things, we gather our daily news, connect with our distant friends, and generally fritter away our precious time. These are the platforms (namely, Twitter, Facebook, and YouTube) of which, throughout the course of his tumultuous and now receding presidency, Trump made such constant and, to the lasting frustration of his many temperate supporters, controversial use.

For months prior to this, his formal expulsion from the world of tech, of which these three large companies made so startling an announcement, he time and again provoked their collective wrath. None more, perhaps, than that of Twitter, the devilishly-addictive company led by the bearded, blue-eyed, rather monotonous Jack Dorsey, with whose penchant for “flagging” misleading information and “contextualizing” outlandish claims, the loose-lipped president was forever at odds. Yielding perhaps to the relentless demands of the exasperated progressives among whom he works, or fearing the continuation of the naughty claims of which Trump was so reckless an author, Dorsey decided that the President was treated too leniently for far too long a time.

The proverbial straw that broke the camel’s back, or, as is the case, the tweet that barred Trump’s future access to Twitter, was sent during the riot by which the Capitol Building was overcome. It was during that terrible event, an afternoon of unrest and bloodshed by which every American soul is scarred, that President Trump’s Twitter account was temporarily suspended. The rationale for so drastic a measure was to prevent the President from sowing further discord, and from exacerbating an already bad situation, which was, if one can believe, frighteningly susceptible to becoming worse. Failing to conform to the Protean terms of use that the company had recently listed, and ignoring the insufferable “warnings” and “fact checks” with which his many tweets were tagged, President Trump was later slapped with a “life-time” ban.

His extremely popular account, through which his every whim was communicated, and his frantic impulses fed, was officially deactivated two days after the event. Facebook and YouTube, of which he personally makes less frequent use, followed the example of their younger cousin, Twitter. Easing off the fraught language of perpetuity, out of which, once entangled, one can seldom remove himself, they decided an “indefinite” suspension of his accounts to be more appropriately tailored to the offense. Other companies, including Snapchat, Reddit, Twitch, and Shopify have followed the others’ lead.

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