After five days of whining about right-wing YouTuber Steven Crowder’s “offensive” T-shirts, a Vox journalist has goaded the video platform giant into de-monetizing Crowder’s channel until he removes the link for his store.
It started on May 29, when Carloz Maza, a gay Vox “journalist” who runs a newsletter called “Strikethrough” began whining about Crowder’s videos aimed at debunking his newsletters.
It's just… a little crush… not like I faint, every time we touch… pic.twitter.com/nTXO1Qdi90
— Carlos Maza (@gaywonk) May 30, 2019
The next day, he complained that Crowder was making “overt attacks” against him for his sexual orientation and race. He posted a clearly – in the parlance of our times – doctored video mashup of Crowder using a high-pitched voice to mock him.
“So, I have pretty thick skin when it comes to online harassment, but something has been really bothering me,” he said. Since I started working at Vox, Steven Crowder has been making video after video ‘debunking’ Strikethrough. Every single video has included repeated, overt attacks on my sexual orientation and ethnicity.”
Since I started working at Vox, Steven Crowder has been making video after video "debunking" Strikethrough. Every single video has included repeated, overt attacks on my sexual orientation and ethnicity. Here's a sample: pic.twitter.com/UReCcQ2Elj
— Carlos Maza (@gaywonk) May 31, 2019
“You’re being given a free pass as a crappy writer because you’re gay,” Crowder said in one of the videos. He also uses the word “queer” in reference to Maza several times.
Maza began lobbying YouTube to remove Crowder’s videos, based on the fact that Crowder is mean and that he sells a shirt which says “Socialism is for F*gs.” (I did not add the asterisk. That is what the shirt says).
Six days of solely focusing on Crowder, and whipping up a mob of left-wingers – including Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) – into a frenzy over Crowder’s content, YouTube finally responded.
Tuesday, YouTube said that Crowder’s videos did not violate their policies.
“Our teams spent the last few days conducting an in-depth review of the videos flagged to us, and while we found language that was clearly hurtful, the videos as posted don’t violate our policies,” the tech giant said in response to Maza.
(2/4) Our teams spent the last few days conducting an in-depth review of the videos flagged to us, and while we found language that was clearly hurtful, the videos as posted don’t violate our policies. We’ve included more info below to explain this decision:
— TeamYouTube (@TeamYouTube) June 4, 2019
That message enraged Maza and his supporters, who doubled down on their indignation.
“I don’t know what to say. [YouTube] has decided not to punish Crowder, after he spent two years harassing me for being gay and Latino. I don’t know what to say,” Maza said.
I don’t know what to say.
@YouTube has decided not to punish Crowder, after he spent two years harassing me for being gay and Latino.
I don't know what to say. https://t.co/EFvWCNvPms
— Carlos Maza (@gaywonk) June 4, 2019
But Wednesday, YouTube apparently reversed course and demonetized Crowder’s channel until he removes the link to his T-shirt page.
“To clarify, in order to reinstate monetization on this channel, he will need to remove the link to his T-shirts,” the company said.
To clarify, in order to reinstate monetization on this channel, he will need to remove the link to his T-shirts.
— TeamYouTube (@TeamYouTube) June 5, 2019
YouTube gave in, but that still was not good enough for the leftist, anti-First Amendment activist at Vox.
“So the fuck what. Basically all political content gets ‘demonetized.’ Crowder’s revenue stream isn’t from YouTube ads. It’s from selling merch and “Socialism Is For Fags” [sic] shirts to millions of loyal customers, that [YouTube] continues to drive to his channel. For free,” he said.
Perhaps Maza – like an adult – should simply logoff if Crowder’s content offends him so much. Maybe he should consider a less public career, as public figures – especially those who work in politics – are typically faced with similar situations.
But that won’t happen.
Instead, the media company will continue to rail against the tech giant until Crowder loses the ability to speak altogether.
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Twitter Posts Job Posting for Developing Paid Subscription Service; Will Platform Become Pay-to-Use?
Will it lead to the downfall of the platform?
Shares for Twitter’s stock surged more than 8% on Wednesday as the company posted an online job listing for a developer who would work on a new system designed as a pay-to-use platform.
The job listing advertises the opening for a project team termed “Gryphon.” The company describes the team as creating a “subscription platform” that “can be reused by other teams in the future.”
In a statement to CNN on the job listing, Twitter underplayed the announcement, stating that it was only a job listing, not a product announcement.
“We’re conducting this survey to assess the interest in a new, more enhanced version of Tweetdeck. We regularly conduct user research to gather feedback about people’s Twitter experience and to better inform our product investment decisions, and we’re exploring several ways to make Tweetdeck even more valuable for professionals.”
CEO Jack Dorsey has resisted shareholder demands to reorganize Twitter to prioritize profitability, most recently fending off a buyout attempt staged by oligarch Paul Singer challenging his leadership of the company. Dorsey kept his position of power over the company after reaching an agreement with profit-hungry shareholders, and the new development of paid subscription software could signal he intends to further satisfy them.
The company’s major investors will likely be pleased by any sign the company intends to convert its service into a pay-to-use model, evolving away from the tradition business model of micro-targeted ads towards its user base. However, a change to a subscription model could prove to be a threat to Twitter’s appeal, especially when newer free speech platforms are gunning for the platform’s user base and the company caves to the demands of censorious liberal journalists in suspending a variety of public figures deemed inconvenient to the neoliberal societal model.
Ultimately, the greed and thirst for power of the privileged elites of Silicon Valley could possibly bring about an end to their era of domination over online political speech, heralding a renaissance of the internet.
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