Earth to Atheist ‘Conservative’ Hunter Avallone: The Mainstream Media Studies Showing No Big Tech Bias are Fake News
Atheist video blogger Hunter Avallone snapped back at Big League Politics and other critics of a recent speech that he gave on behalf of Turning Point USA at Penn State University denying the reality of Big Tech censorship against conservatives.
Avallone posted the video response on YouTube to widespread condemnation on Monday in which he doubled down on his assertion that conservatives are playing the victim and exaggerating claims of conservative voices being systematically booted off platforms:
Avallone pointed to mainstream data in his video, which he believes debunks the notion that conservatives are being targeted for censorship. He claimed that the incredible number of instances of prominent conservatives being booted from platforms are mere “anecdotal evidence” while his data proves his assertions correct.
The first piece of data Avallone cited came from an analysis conducted by the far-left Daily Beast, which showed that conservative outlets outperformed liberal outlets on social media. They pointed to data from Feb. 2019 showing that Fox News received 45 million engagements, the Daily Mail received 38 million engagements and Ben Shapiro’s Daily Wire received 30 million engagements on the platform.
This data shows that mainstream conservative websites have no problems on the platform, but it is smaller grassroots competitors – the ones that initially coalesced behind Trump – that are being targeted. Fox News has taken a leftward shift in recent years while Shapiro’s blog produces propaganda on Facebook’s behalf to stay on the platform. Media organizations that have refused to capitulate in the restrictive atmosphere are the ones that have been targeted, not the entities that comply with Big Brother’s demands.
Also, the popularity of conservative media versus the fake news left-wing media is the major reason why the censorship crackdown has been initiated. They are trying to stop Trump’s re-election as well as unplanned, grassroots-driven political movements from being able to occur in the future. Google has admitted as much, as a document leak and hidden camera footage from Project Veritas have shown.
Those facts make the Economist study cited by Avallone which claims that Google rewards reputable reporting, not left-wing politics all the more laughable.
“Overall, center-left sites like The New York Times got the most links, but only about as many as our model suggested. Fox News beat its modest expectations. Because far-right outlets had bad trust scores, they got few search results,” the study concluded. “But so did Daily Kos, a far-left site.”
The Economist measured their results against a model they developed themselves. Because they received fewer left-wing news hits and more right-wing news hits on Google than they had estimated initially, they concluded that Google’s algorithms were designed based on reputability. Google uses arbitrarily-designed “trust scores” to determine search results, which effectively suppresses content outside of the mainstream.
Avallone also pointed to reports that the Trump campaign used Facebook as its secret weapon to unexpectedly win the 2016 presidential election. Avallone cited a 2016 article written shortly after Trump’s victory by Wired that explained Trump’s digital prowess:
“Our biggest incubator that allowed us to generate that money was Facebook,” says Parscale, who has been working for the campaign since before Trump officially announced his candidacy a year and a half ago. Over the course of the election cycle, Trump’s campaign funneled $90 million to Parscale’s San Antonio-based firm, most of which went toward digital advertising. And Parscale says more of that ad money went to Facebook than to any other platform.
“Facebook and Twitter were the reason we won this thing,” he says. “Twitter for Mr. Trump. And Facebook for fundraising.”
In the wake of Trump’s stunning upset last week, media analysts have worked feverishly to figure out how social media may have altered the outcome of this election. They—and we—have pointed to online echo chambers and the proliferation of fake news as the building blocks of Trump’s victory. But the answer may be much simpler. Of course Facebook was hugely influential in the presidential election, in large part because Trump’s campaign embraced Facebook as a key advertising channel in a way that no presidential campaign has before—not even Clinton’s.
Of course, this news is irrelevant considering the large-scale crackdown on conservative voices didn’t occur until well after the 2016 presidential election took place. It happened as a backlash against the grassroots voices that were so influential in pushing Trump to the presidency when the establishment wanted nothing to do with his populist, rabble-rousing campaign.
In his video, Avallone also defended Big Tech for throwing right-wing voices like Laura Loomer, Alex Jones, Gavin McInnes and Milo Yiannopoulos off of their platforms based on their nebulous and capriciously-enforced terms of service. He even attacked Prager University and Stephen Crowder for daring to suggest that Big Tech is censoring conservative voices.
Oddly enough, Avallone didn’t attack President Donald Trump for making the same assertions.
It is clear that Avallone is in opposition of President Trump’s agenda to stop Orwellian censorship on social media platforms, even though he doesn’t have the intellectual courage to come out and say he opposes the President directly.