Following President Donald Trump’s warning to social media companies about biased censorship, his son Donald Trump Jr. revealed that he would gladly back a conservative version of Facebook.
If Trump’s 2020 campaign were to build such a platform, the younger Trump told Axios he would “love to do it.”
“I’d love to do it. But what I prefer is, take one of the two Silicon Valley conservatives and let them start it,” Trump Jr. said. “And then I’d help promote the platform and be all over that.”
His comments followed a report this week from The New York Times that revealed more than 100 Facebook employees have formed an online group called FB’ers for Political Diversity, pushing for tolerance of conservative ideologies and challenging what the group’s founder, senior Facebook engineer Brian Amerige, called the company’s “political monoculture.”
“We are a political monoculture that’s intolerant of different views. We claim to welcome all perspectives, but are quick to attack — often in mobs — anyone who presents a view that appears to be in opposition to left-leaning ideology,” Amerige wrote on an internal Facebook message board. The post was later deleted.
Trump Jr. told Axios there is “exactly zero doubt in my mind” that the bias is real in the tech companies.
“I don’t think [this issue] is going away, because I don’t think it’s changing,” he said, noting that the companies need to better regulate themselves. “Many of these platforms get many benefits from the government.”
The president has accused social media of discriminating against Republican and conservative voices.
Social Media is totally discriminating against Republican/Conservative voices. Speaking loudly and clearly for the Trump Administration, we won’t let that happen. They are closing down the opinions of many people on the RIGHT, while at the same time doing nothing to others…….
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 18, 2018
He escalated his comments on Tuesday, warning Facebook and Twitter after blasting Google earlier in the day.
“If you look at what is going on with Twitter and if you look at what’s going on in Facebook, they better be careful because you can’t do that to people,” Trump said at an event at the White House.
Trump Jr., who has 3 million Twitter followers and 1.3 million Instagram followers, told Axios that if a conservative, social network like Facebook was created by someone, he would advocate Trump supporters to switch to it. While alternative platforms like Minds and Gab currently exist, their membership is nowhere near that of the social media giant.
“The companies cannot sit back and say nothing is happening. Algorithms are written by people. Everybody has some bias in them. Anyone claims they don’t have bias, they’re not human,” House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy told Axios.
The California Republican shared Trump’s #StopTheBias hashtag and video in a tweet on Wednesday.
— Kevin McCarthy (@GOPLeader) August 29, 2018
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 29, 2018
Facebook Chief Operating Officer Sheryl Sandberg and Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey will be appearing before the Senate Intelligence Committee next week.
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