Big Tech Companies Continue to Target Political Dissidents
Silicon Valley continues to target and harass politically incorrect political dissidents with no end in sight. Now Patreon has joined the other big boys in shutting down those with whom they disagree.
By John Friend
Conservative commentators and other political dissidents continued to feel the effects of an increasingly brazen censorship and de-platforming campaign led by some of the top technology companies in Silicon Valley as 2018 came to a close.
In December, Patreon, a leading crowdfunding site that allows content creators to set up a profile and raise money from supporters in the form of one-time or recurring donations, banned the profiles of two prominent conservative political pundits: Milo Yiannopoulos, a former editor of Breitbart News, and Carl Benjamin, a British YouTuber commonly known as his online alias Sargon of Akkad.
“I’ve had a miserable year or two, banned and de-platformed and censored and blacklisted,” Yiannopoulos lamented on his Patreon page before his account was quickly suspended by the company. “Now I need your help. I want to get back on my feet and come roaring back in 2019.”
Needless to say, Yiannopoulos will have to find another platform to get back on his feet if he’s to “come roaring back,” as Patreon banned the controversial pundit shortly after he created the account.
Patreon stated in a tweet that “Milo Yiannopoulos was removed from Patreon as we don’t allow association with or supporting hate groups on Patreon.”
Yiannopoulos has long been associated with the Proud Boys, a pro-Western fraternal organization founded by Gavin McInnes that has come under extreme scrutiny in recent months.
The Proud Boys have been hysterically denounced by many mainstream media outlets, political commentators, and anti-American activist organizations such as the Southern Poverty Law Center as a “hate group” that is responsible for political violence, false claims endlessly repeated by the fake-news media.
Benjamin was also banned from the crowdfunding platform last month. Benjamin had been using Patreon to allow his viewers and supporters to fund his independent journalistic endeavors, which netted the British commentator $12,000 per month, according to the site. Patreon told “Vice News” that Benjamin was banned from its site for his “violation of hate speech in our guidelines.”
The tech giant has accused the YouTube star of using “racial and homophobic slurs to degrade another individual.”
The irony of banning Benjamin, though, is that he doesn’t even call himself a conservative. He characterizes himself as a classical English liberal and is considered to be only slightly left of center on the political spectrum.
In related news, a number of leftist activist groups have organized a campaign to demand that advertisers stop placing ads with Tucker Carlson’s popular Fox News program. Carlson has been a major critic of the radical left and their attempts to destroy America with massive Third World immigration, amnesty for illegal aliens, open borders, and forced multiculturalism. These very vocal far-left groups want advertisers to boycott Carlson’s show in an effort to shut down and de-platform the increasingly popular host. Thus far, the calls for a boycott have been largely unsuccessful, and Fox News has commendably stood by and supported Carlson.
“We cannot and will not allow voices like Tucker Carlson to be censored by agenda-driven intimidation efforts from the likes of Moveon.org, Media Matters, and Sleeping Giants,” Fox News said in a statement to “The Daily Wire.”
“Attempts were made last month to bully and terrorize Tucker and his family at their home. He is now once again being threatened via Twitter by far-left activist groups with deeply political motives.”
The statement went on to read: “While we do not advocate boycotts, these same groups never target other broadcasters and operate under a grossly hypocritical double standard given their intolerance to all opposing points of view.”
We can expect the First Amendment free speech rights of dissident commentators, pundits, and independent media outlets to continue to be challenged by the radical left and large corporate tech companies—like those dominating Silicon Valley—as we enter 2019.
John Friend is a freelance writer who lives in California.