Facebook is influencing the election of United States Senate candidate Austin Petersen. They censored two of his posts which could have a damaging effect on his campaign.
Austin Peterson, candidate for United States Senate from Missouri posted a video he says was created to promote a gun giveaway. An effort to encourage supporters to sign up for his Official Campaign site and newsletters.
Shortly after this, his video was removed from Facebook. An additional link to the gun giveaway was also removed by Facebook.
Mr. Petersen says he is running on a Pro-Second Amendment platform. In his open letter to Mark Zuckerberg he said:
“At the same time the block was affected, a Facebook Live video I had posted to my Official Page promoting my campaign’s AR-15 giveaway was removed. A few days later, a Status Update posted to my Profile referencing the same giveaway was also removed. I’m confident that such giveaways are consistent with Facebook’s policies — several posts promoting the giveaway, including paid “Dark Posts,” remain visible on our page — so it’s unclear to me why such content would warrant an immediate takedown and thirty-day ban.”
“I’ve been following with interest your recent statements defending Facebook as an unbiased platform “for all ideas.” I hope that’s really true. However, blocking a candidate for the United States Senate for exercising support of the Second Amendment — especially when that candidate is challenging an incumbent favored by members of your board — is cause for concern and worthy of a larger conversation and a public explanation. I hope that you, or Ms. Sandberg, are able to offer one that assuages my concerns and the concerns of the larger conservative community.”
Conservatives and Christians alike have maintained that Facebook is unfair to them. Fox News reported on the issue in May 2016. Facebook often blames their Artifical Intelligence. The key word here is “artificial” which means someone at Facebook told that intelligence how to think artificially.
According to a report by Gizmodo, in May 2016, a former Facebook employee admitted that Facebook often targeted Conservative News:
“Facebook workers routinely suppressed news stories of interest to conservative readers from the social network’s influential “trending” news section, according to a former journalist who worked on the project.”
PC World recently reported that conservatives are exposed to more fake news on Facebook than liberals.
There is a growing body of evidence which proves that Facebook is engaging in the systematic suppression of the Conservative and Christian perspective. Now evidence suggests that Facebook is using their platform for political purposes.
However, Facebook is not registered as a 501(c)4 Political Organization. It is unclear if a company can legally engage in political activities, especially in the area of Media and Censorship of the First Amendment right of United States Senate Candidates. There are laws that regulate “equal time” for publishers and broadcasters as they relate to politics.
This latest attack on a Republican Senate Candidate is just one more example of how Facebook is manipulating the conversation while claiming to be bringing people together.
Of course, they may have picked the wrong person to pick on. Austin Petersen says he would never support legislation that would prevent Facebook from bringing people together. At least, that is what he says right now. He is, after all, a politician.