It is not news that we have a problem with social media censorship and cancel culture. It happened with notable figures in our society in the past; it is still happening with some.
Most notably, former President Trump was kicked off Twitter because he cared to share his views and opinions. He had his social media access taken away because the ‘powers’ at Twitter HQ didn’t like how he expressed himself.
For a while now, J.K Rowling, the author of Harry Potter, has been hounded on the internet because she chooses not to follow the far-left ideology of trans women being women.
However, in an interesting turn of events, a study has shown there’s a link between extremism and social media censorship or cancel culture.
This is quite interesting because the study proves censoring does the exact thing these big techs like Facebook and Twitter claim they are trying to prevent.
cancel culture is a fucking plague. i bet y’all have said some fucked up shit yet here we are.
— toren (@ybtoren) March 30, 2022
Findings of the Study
According to the study conducted by a free speech activist, Bill Ottman and race relations expert Daryl Davis, social media platforms’ censorship and tough content moderation policies make social media users more polarized and isolated.
In simple terms, the policies are making people not to be able to express themselves freely. The study concluded this is leading to more extremism.
Daryl Davis & Bill Ottman discuss the pitfalls of deplatforming & censorship and why engagement is the better path to deradicalization. https://t.co/nkK5XLd8s6
— The Futurist Devil 👹 (@BobDobb01738592) March 27, 2022
Besides, between 2017 and 2021, the top social media companies like Google, Twitter, and Facebook saw the increase in misinformation and hate speech multiply by 20 times.
Within this time, they have enacted very strict censorship policies. In light of this, the study says there’s every reason to believe their approach does not work.
Per the study, when ‘extremists’ are banned from large social media sites, they do not stop their extremist acts. Instead, they look for nefarious platforms to join.
In light of this, they are more exposed to more evil by joining such platforms, thereby ‘increasing’ the evil in them.
According to Ottman, data shows that canceling people and denying them the opportunity to express their views, regardless of how society sees them, only leads to more harm in the long run.
According to him, they move to an ‘echo chamber’ where their beliefs and thoughts are reinforced.
In light of this, the data suggests that these ‘de-platformed’ individuals are the ones that later perform shootings at mosques, events, and synagogues.
Censorship Isn’t Working
The main focus of the study is that censorship from ‘big tech’ isn’t working. Instead, these people just take their hate somewhere else.
However, Ottman noted these big social media companies are in a tight spot already, and they have to do things in a way that pleases most of their readers.
He stated they should work with facts, data, and figures to make their decisions.
What are your thoughts on this study? Do you agree with it? What do you suggest to be done? It will be great to hear your thoughts on this one.