Instagram restored the account of controversial men’s rights advocate Daryush Valizadeh, who uses Rush V as his online pseudonym, after Big League Politics asked the platform’s parent company, Facebook, for comment.
The big tech platform confirmed its decision to remove Valizadeh’s account was banned by mistake on Thursday evening, after previously banning his account within minutes of Chase Bank’s payment processor WePay doing the same.
Valizadeh was banned from Instagram and Chase Bank’s WePay late on Thursday night, on the same day he announced his 2019 tour.
Strangely, according to Valizadeh, his Instagram account was private. Users had to ask his permission to receive his posts, and Valizadeh had to manually approve each person. Ostensibly, this should have prevented users who did not share his views or respect them from being offended by them.
Instagram was not clear on what policies Valizadeh violated in its notice to the men’s rights advocate.
Chase has not yet provided an explanation for Valizadeh’s ban, and has expressed concern about whether it would be able to do so as the information may be considered private and privileged between the financial institution and the men’s rights advocate.
Valizadeh has been accused of holding misogynist views, and those who disagree claims he wants to legalize rape. Valizadeh and various fact checking organizations, including the politically left-leaning Snopes, have debunked these claims.
Earlier this week, Instagram reinstated a photo collage containing Paul Joseph Watson, Laura Loomer, and Milo Yiannopoulos, who Facebook considers “dangerous” and “hate figures” after Big League Politics requested an explanation for the photo’s removal.
YOUR NEW MASTER: Twitter’s Head of Conversational Safety, a “Young, Queer Asian-American Businesswoman,” is “Rethinking” the Concept of User Safety
Do you trust someone like her to make Twitter “a safer place”?
The media company Protocol, a sister site of Politico, recently published an article about Twitter’s new “head of product for conversational safety,” Christine Su. It claims that Su, a “young, queer Asian-American businesswoman,” is revolutionizing what “user safety” on social media means.
Twitter hired Su around six months ago to be in charge of “what might be the most difficult task on Twitter,” despite having no apparent experience in politics, programming, and media relations. But Twitter seems to like her for her “creative” and “somewhat radical new ideas” about user safety.
“As a queer woman of color who is an Asian American in tech in rural America, that experience is a very intersectional one. I’ve had plenty of experiences moving through spaces where I wanted more safety,” Su said.
Protocol writes that Su’s vision incorporates “transformative and procedural justice.” Transformative justice ostensibly refers to a non-retributive form of repairing harm done to someone and preventing it from happening again; procedural justice to enacting a set of rules that “make harm rarer in the first place.”
This all sounds nice and dandy—but beware. So-called transformative and procedural justice will not benefit you, but will crush you. Anything that’s perceived as “harmful” against “women and people from marginalized groups” can and will be used to censor you. Christine Su may reassuringly claim that “the point is not to make the entire world a safe space,” but she’s open about the fact that she will help give the Coalition of the Fringes more control over what people are allowed to do and say on Twitter.
Examples from the article:
- Creating an audio hangout feature called “Spaces,” which will allow users to determine who is allowed to participate, as well as who can speak and when. (Note that it’s being tested on “women and marginalized groups of people” first.)
- Potentially doubling down on functions that “encourage people to read content before reposting it.” (Which is exclusively done to censor or limit the reach of conservative and other right-wing content.)
- Building tools that “create private pathways for apologies, forgiveness and deescalation.” (The finer details are still a work in progress according to Su.)
- Defining what a “meaningful conversation” is. (Would people like Su think that anything right-wingers say or believe belongs in a “meaningful conversation”? Let’s just say I wouldn’t bet money on it…)
You know full well that a company like Facebook would shortly follow suit. After all, it’s not just Twitter that Su is “revolutionizing,” but the concept of social media itself. Figure out where all this is heading.
Now is as good a time as ever to plug our Parler:
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