Recently Facebook decided to ban several conservative publishers. Many people will consider this is a good thing. I’m not one of them. I consider it a really bad thing. Not only for the press freedom, but also for Facebook. Let’s begin to recognize that Facebook is doing something extremely well and good. They are highly profitable and we are providing them with all the data they sell. Completely for free.
It is almost impossible not to be up on Facebook. As a publisher, I must admit that we can’t live without it. Please take a moment to like my Facebook page.
But there is a big danger about what’s happening right now. Everyone lives in their own bubble. Why are we so afraid of points of view that we disagree with. Why can we not be open minded?
You can say those who were banned from Facebook are just right-wing Nazis. Maybe it is the case.
But there is a bigger danger. This is a real problem for Facebook. We see it already happening.
The big danger might end Facebook. We see it already happening. The traffic Facebook generates is on its way down. They assume that half of the Facebook accounts are fake. Think about this when it comes to advertising there.
One of the effects of the removal of certain profiles is that certain groups in the society have turned there back to Facebook. In the United States, the traffic is down by 40%. This means that there are 40% fewer data to sell and profile upon.
Here comes another reason. On the moment of writing, we remember those who died in the second World War. One of the most used words during the service was worth freedom. This is a very difficult thing. My freedom to publish is the freedom of others to publish negatively about me. I publish very strong opinions. The result is that death threats are normal for me. It is also fine by me. That’s called tolerance and freedom of speech.
But it is not Facebook alone that is in danger. All social media companies Twitter, YouTube and Google are not better. We should ask ourselves what really is happening. Why are the points of view we disagree with no longer welcome?
It is time that we will have an alternative. China is frequently criticized that they silence whistleblowers and have a cursor. It is something that happens in a military dictatorship. But is the west like it? Are we now really the world of no free elections and no chance to inform ourselves?