Two federal courts have ruled that the Biden Administration unduly influenced social media moderation during the COVID-19 pandemic. Some public health and legal experts have argued that these efforts were necessary and did not constitute censorship. They are downplaying the extent of the government's efforts and overlooking their serious consequences.
Even as cigarette manufacturers can no longer escape liability for addiction-inducing practices, social media (SM) companies hide behind the First Amendment and The Communications Decency Act (CDA) to protect themselves. A recent case dents this shield. But the decision still protects some SM activities - even those allegedly engendering addictions in teens. I disagree with the Court’s reasoning. Here’s why.
Too Much Stuff Am I My Area Code? Rules for reading – at least for social media
From an evolutionary view, becoming alarmed over dangerous situations is adaptive. Our fight-or-flee response has been honed over the millennium. Now, our prompt and focused attention on alarming information has been used by media – old, main, or social – to capture our eyes and ears (and wallets). What might science tell us about our increasingly alarming media diets? For that, let's first turn to hospitals.
Yet another study shows that Neurontin is a poor substitute for prescription opioids, so why do physicians continue to prescribe it? Twitter recently put a warning on an ACSH obesity story. Is social-media censorship here to stay?
Continuing its trend of unjustified censorship, Twitter put a "warning" on one of our recent tweets "so people who don’t want to see sensitive content can avoid it." This protects nobody, but it denies the public access to credible health information.
For years, we’ve heard that social media is dangerous- especially to kids. The data was sketchy, but the anecdotal reports horrific - the perfect ground for band-aid remedies, poorly thought-out responses, inadequate legislation, and lawyers trolling for personal injury clients. But now, it seems a new threat has been detected: Addiction. Is it real? Other countries seem to think so.
Certainty and extremism Will we ever know the origin of COVID-19? What can the Talmud teach us about Twitter and Facebook? And now, a moment with Hans Rosling.
Remember the 1983 movie, War Games, in which a teen played by Matthew Broderick hacked into a military computer system? He was asked, “Shall we play a game?” and he responded, “Sure, how about thermonuclear war.” Well, Twitter has gamified conversation and turned discourse into a different kind of “thermonuclear” war, without the missiles.
North Carolina State University recently cancelled a science-outreach event because the invited speakers have the wrong skin color. It's another example of academic institutions prizing a radical social agenda over education.
Operation Warp Speed, everyone loves watching a controlled building demolition, know your adversary, and social media and the “slap heard round the world.”
Communication is a two-way street – what the speaker is sharing and what the listener hears. Twitter keeps our communications brief, sharing thoughts, not fully formed ideas. I’ve written about what we hear on several occasions, but a new study looks at what is being said by journalists and how that differs greatly from what they write.