FBI Director Christopher Wray Wants Social Media Platforms To Assume More “Responsibility” and “Moderate” Content
In the present political context, there is very little distinction between the public and private.
This dynamic is apparent with Big Tech and its intimate relationship with the administrative state. In recent years, Big Tech companies have offered themselves up as private enforcers of the managerial regime’s agenda. No question that Big Tech companies’ decision to censor political content did not happen by chance. Politicians have largely jaw-boned Big Tech companies into complying with their pro-censorship agenda.
With agencies like the FBI exercising coercive power, Big Tech will always fall in line.
Just look at what FBI Director Christopher Wray wants to do with Big Tech. In a recent report by Dan Frieth of Reclaim the Net, Wray was on record saying that social media platforms should assume more responsibility and moderate content.
He made these statements on August 4, 2022 during a Senate Judiciary Committee oversight hearing. Wray argued that America would be a “better place” if social media companies became more proactive about policing the misuse of their platforms.
Wray’s comments were in response to Connecticut Senator Richard Blumenthal’s comments about what the FBI can do to tackle the use of social media to incite violence. In addition, Blumenthal asked Wray if tech companies were sufficiently pulling their weight in trying to prevent attacks.
Allegedly, the participants of the January storming of the US Capitol organized through social media. This incident made the ruling class throw a fit and has prompted several elected officials to use January 6 as a pretext for further government control of social media.
In Wray’s view, Big Tech giants can do more to moderate content that is in violation of their community standards.
“We tried to work with the social media companies and there are things that they can and do using their terms of service and violations of their terms of service to take accounts down and things like that,” Wray stated.
“But there is, I think, a phenomenon that we all have to recognize, which is that the social media industry enjoys the ability to amplify and connect people. There are good things that come with that and bad things that come with that. We would all be in a better place the more the companies take responsibility for misuse and abuse of the platforms.”
The committee’s chair, Illinois Senator Dick Durbin, was surprised that the FBI is not actively monitoring publicly available social media content, in light of the January 6 storming of the Capitol.
Durbin also brought up how the Attorney General’s guidelines grant the FBI the power to “proactively surf the internet to find publicly available websites where the promotion of terrorist crimes are openly taking place.”
Wray stressed that the FBI monitoring of social media is a complicated topic.
“It’s more complicated than that, but with proper predication and authorized purpose, there are things we can do in terms of publicly available social media,” the FBI director stated.
Utah Senator Mike Lee informed Wray that Americans have a reasonable expectation of privacy. He argued that an FBI move to monitor social media would constitute a warrantless search.
Lee called attention to a 2021 transparency report where the FBI revealed that it identified four cases of US citizens being unlawfully searched without going through the legal process spelled out by Section 270 of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA).
Section 270 grants the government the power to collect the electronic communications of foreigners. However, due to the intrusive nature of the modern American state, there have been numerous cases of Americans being unlawfully spied on.
Lee pressed Wray about how the FBI discovered the four cases and how it ultimately determined there were actually four. In Lee’s view, it was “utterly implausible” that the number was only four. Wray did not provide a solid answer to Lee’s inquiries. The FBI Director claimed that the findings could have been acquired from DOJ’s national security reviews and internal FBI audits to determine if they complied with FISA standards.
No doubt there’s an unholy alliance between Big Tech and the Deep State. This combination of heavy-handy statism and corporate efficiency is one of the greatest threats to the American Republic.
A serious America First policy agenda would seek to abolish the FBI and defang Big Tech through the passage of Internet of Bill of Rights legislation that limits Big Tech companies’ ability to censor online speech.
These institutions cannot be allowed to function for any longer. They present existential threats to the Right and must be brought to heal.
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