Christian group demands tech giants stop censorship or face tidal wave of lawsuits

Monday, December 17, 2018
By Paul Martin

by: Vicki Batts
Monday, December 17, 2018

Dr. Jerry Johnson, president of the National Religious Broadcasters (NRB), issued a final warning to the leaders of Silicon Valley, demanding that Big Tech stops censoring Christian and conservative content. If they fail to do so, Johnson and 60 million NRB members will engage in a massive campaign to strip the companies of the “Good Samaritan” legal protections they currently enjoy. While the tech industry denies that conservative speech is being suppressed on their platform, there is no shortage of evidence to the contrary.

A recently leaked internal document from Google entitled, “The Good Censor,” which basically states that the tech industry is moving away from free speech-driven platforms and into the arms of Big Brother and censorship.

Google’s move towards censorship is perhaps one of the most dangerous, especially given the company’s enormous reach and influence over what content users see. It’s no wonder NRB is urging Big Tech to adopt policies that uphold the individual’s right to free speech. If no action is taken now, soon there may be no rights left to defend.

NRB calls on Big Tech to stop censorship
NRB President Dr. Johnson issued letters to the leaders of the biggest companies in tech, calling on them to “implement their own free speech charter governing their content moderation,” or face losing their Good Samaritan status. NRB is a Christian group with some 60 million followers, ready to petition Congress for “a review of the ‘Good Samaritan’ section of Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act.”

Under this section, Big Tech is not only free from liability of what users post, but free to moderate “offensive” content for “Good Samaritan” purposes. Johnson has advocated for a reconsideration of section 230 on several occasions, but states that he’d prefer for Big Tech to simply choose to support free speech of their own volition.

Speaking with PJ Media, Dr. Johnson commented, “We prefer not to do that. We are asking them to acknowledge the problem and adopt a voluntary free speech charter which would say, ‘This is a free speech zone.’”

In an NRB press release, Johnson states that “if major tech corporations continue to effectively ignore substantiated cries of viewpoint suppression – intentional or not, algorithmic or human – then I believe it’s time for a remedy.” He added that a review of Section 230 is preferable to “possibly heavy-handed government interventions.”

So far, it appears that Big Tech is going to double down on their insistence that no censorship is going on. PJ Media was reportedly told by a Twitter spokesperson, “We’ll review the letter, but I want to emphasize that we apply our rules equally across the platform.”

Censorship is a dangerous game

Dr. Johnson says NRB has 40 documented cases of internet censorship, but that “does not include every verifiable example of viewpoint suppression, and we believe it is actually only ‘the tip of the iceberg’ with many more instances of censorship going unreported by people who feel they have no recourse.”

NRBTV, the NRB’s former livestream channel, was deleted without explanation last year. “They never gave an adequate explanation. It had something to do with terrorism,” Johnson recalls.

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