With online censorship at an all time high, is it fair to say that one of the very fundamentals of what made the internet so special is in jeopardy? Mainstream websites and platforms are restricting and censoring content creators at an alarming rate. YouTube for instance will give community guideline strikes for language or speech that doesn’t fit within their terms and conditions. Many independent content creators including myself have found other platforms to upload content to that censor content less just so we can continue to bring archived static content to our supporters.
YouTube isn’t a publicly-traded company, so there is no stock price or stock ticker for YouTube. If a company is not publicly-traded it does not guarantee it’s users the right to free speech. In fact this precedence was settled in court already. Right-wing channel PragerU argued YouTube was infringing its rights by “censoring” their views. San Francisco’s Ninth Circuit appeals court rejected and decided against the notion that YouTube had breached the First Amendment.
To me this raises a larger question. If it’s in a public space in any other facet of life, most times the First Amendment applies and free speech is constitutionally protected. At least in theory. Mainstream outlets like YouTube seem to have a monopoly on the public space for content creation, and they’re technically in a public space, so why doesn’t free speech apply on these mediums? It’s a question that I’m sure will be challenged in more courts soon. If We the People, no matter what political affiliation, race, religion, etc can establish case law that these mainstream platforms are public and therefore protected under the First Amendment, that would be a huge win for all independent content creators.
Nevertheless there’s content creators willing to keep speaking their minds freely even in this current climate. Podcasts like “For All Matters” hosted by yours truly intend on doing our part to keep free speech alive as long as possible. The latest episode of my podcast is embedded above and is guest hosted by Emillio EgBar host of the NonStop Radio show. In this episode titled “Truth to Power” we discuss this topic and many other issues we are all facing in these days and times. Check this episode out and share it across all of your social media if you like it and support the right to free speech for content creators.
Thank you, and until next time … I SAID MY PIECE!