CNN’s leftwing media reporter Brian Stelter suggested that social media giants aren’t doing enough to censor what he describes as “disinformation.”
On the latest episode of BBC Radio 4’s “The Media Show,” Stelter participated in a panel discussion about the explosive New York Post report on Hunter Biden’s emails and Twitter and Facebook’s efforts to suppress the spread of it on its platforms.
Axios media reporter Sara Fischer began the conversation about big tech companies being warned by the intelligence community to look out for “illegally hacked or illegally obtained” information that is leaked to the press ahead of the 2020 election following the DNC email hack in 2016. Fischer stressed that this “matters” because “disinformation campaigns from bad actors” could be sharing altered emails that appear more damaging than they really are.
No one from the Democratic nominee Joe Biden’s team has yet to say that any of the reported emails are inauthentic.
Washington Examiner Chief Congressional Correspondent Susan Ferrechio pointed to the “Democratic operatives” who now have high-ranking positions at these social media companies and suggested that there was a double standard between how Twitter and Facebook acted swiftly on the New York Post report that’s damaging to Joe Biden but takes no action against reports damaging to President Trump that rely on “illegally obtained” information.
However, Fischer pushed back at the bias charge, claiming there are “plenty of conservatives” that work in big tech and questioned the reason why it appears that companies like Twitter and Facebook crackdown on conservatives, suggesting “they are doing things that violate their policies more so than other left-leaning groups.”
Fischer added that “It’s not that it doesn’t exist on the left. I just think that in America right now, we are seeing some of the movements on the right that tend to trigger the policy violations on these platforms.”
BBC News media editor Amol Rajan then turned to Stelter on whether the tech giants are “picking and choosing” things to go after and using “editorial judgment as to what should and shouldn’t be in the public domain.”
“There used to be a word for that, didn’t it? It used to be called ‘journalism,'” Rajan quipped.
Stelter agreed that Twitter and Facebook were “acting more and more like the newsroom,” saying that they are put in “awkward situations almost every day.”
“And honestly, they’re not even doing one-tenth of what they should be doing,” Stelter said. “They’re trying to play catchup. Nobody I think on [the panel] is going to defend the platforms. The platforms screw up all the time and they’re barely cleaning up the sewer that they have allowed to exist.”
The host of the weekly show, “Reliables Sources,” then circled back to Fischer’s question regarding why it’s the perception that conservatives are punished on such platforms instead of liberals.
“It’s because there’s asymmetric lying and asymmetric nastiness right now in American politics,” Stelter explained. “Look at Joe Biden’s ads versus Donald Trump’s ads. Look at who’s more negative, look at who’s lying more often. Asymmetric nastiness is a sad consequence of our politics right now. There’s a lot more indecency and BS… being spread by the right. It’s sad, hopefully it will stop, but right now it’s true and that’s what the platforms are reacting to.”