If you have a certain interest in American troubles, you’ve probably heard the name Alex Jones. It is – to put it briefly – a mockery who thinks up the strangest conspiracy theories and propagates them through various platforms under the name Infowars. Strangely enough that waus has fans too and there are a lot of people who are swollen for true. Recently, however, he has been in trouble.
His ravings have had consequences for the relatives of the shooting in Sandy Hook of 2011 in which 6 adults and 20 children were shot. Jones said that the shooting did not take place at all and that actors had been hired to put it in scene. Because Jones kept going on about that claim, several parents of dead children were threatened by crazy fans of Jones. He is also behind Pizzagate by the way.
Thrown out everywhere
The big tech platforms have tolerated Jones for years, but now the size is apparently full. In the last week, Apple Spotify and Stitcher have thrown Jones’ podcasts of their services. Facebook gave Jones a warning and temporary suspension last week, but now – presumably under pressure from public opinion – it is apparently completely over for Jones on Facebook. Four of his pages have been removed . YouTube also removed videos from Jones last week, but his channel is still active, as he is now on two of the three ‘strikes’ that make a channel disappear.
Then we actually only have Twitter. This has been criticized for a long time because it would not do enough to tackle extremism. It may have removed a large number of accounts that are used as ‘army’ for certain groups, but even though Twitter also has very clear rules against incitement to hatred and fake news, many figures like Jones are not addressed. The only one thrown from Twitter is dick with fingers Milo Yiannopoulos who made such a big sport of bullying celebrities through his followers that it was too big for Twitter.
And that’s exactly where the sting is in this story. At first I wanted to say that Twitter does not understand and that it is time that they have to do something against Alex Jones, but that is only one company, while almost all of them are guilty of bad overview. This situation only shows that if there is enough noise around one person or organization, then suddenly everyone steps at once, but the rest of the time all this kind of misery is just under the carpet.
Jones should have been rid of YouTube, rather than almost. Twitter has given free right to extreme right and other hate mongers for years. Apple and Spotify have now acted relatively fast, but also only because the conversation around Jones has reached a boiling point. The tech companies that do most of the conversation that we have with each other really do not do enough to help cut the important links that fake news around the world. They are too cowardly, too cumbersome or too lax to do anything about it and as long as that does not change we are doomed to keep repeating these kinds of scandals, while nothing changes . That will certainly be better for the bottom line of those companies, but for all of us it is very bad news. And then really.