Not content with Donald Trump’s pending departure from the White House, America’s original cable TV news channel wants to enter the Biden era by silencing its Trump-leaning competitors.
On CNN”s “Reliable Sources” program on Sunday, Alex Stamos, a former top executive with Facebook, noted that some conservatives on social media have more reach than CNN’s own daytime programming.
“People are able to seek out the information that makes them feel good,” Stamos said. “People have so much choice now. They can choose what their news sources are. They can choose what influencers they want to follow. And they can seal out anything that helps them question that.”
Such consumer choice, of course, is the foundation of a free market. In fact, during Trump’s tenure, CNN’s viewers have done this for years, dismissing Fox News and other conservative sources as unreliable or unworthy – and thus, to borrow Stamos’s phrase, sealing themselves off from news that favors Trump or Republicans.
But Stamos claimed freedoms, and especially press freedom was being abused by those “who have a broad range of political views.
“It is now in the great economic interest of those individuals to become more and more radical,” he added.
As examples, he noted Newsmax and the One America News Network that have sought to outflank Fox News to its right after Fox introduced “realism” in its reporting and succeeded in picking up new followers.
“That becomes a huge challenge of figuring out how do you bring those people back into the mainstream of fact-based reporting,” Stamos added.
The arrogance in that comment is remarkable from an analyst on a network that promoted the Trump-Russia collusion hoax for four years and once, as part of that, was forced to fire three of its reporters for a phony story about one of Trump’s associate’s financial ties to Russia.
Stamos called for social media companies to crackdown on conservatives as they once did ISIS.
“We have to turn down the capability of these Conservative influencers to reach these huge audiences,” he said. “There are people on YouTube, for example, that have a larger audience than daytime CNN – and they are extremely radical and pushing extremely radical views.”
“It’s up to the Facebook and YouTubes, in particular, to think about whether or not they want to be effectively cable networks for disinformation.”
He then argued that something needed to be done about the OANN/Newsmax “problem.”
Stamos, seemingly regrettably, admitted conservative media has free speech but added, “I’m not sure we need Verizon, AT&T, Comcast, and such to be bringing them into tens of millions of homes.”
Oliver Darcy, a media reporter for CNN, then favorably tweeted Stamos’s comment, adding, “Just a reminder that neither @Verizon, @ATT, now @comcast have answered many questions about why they beam channels like OAN & Newsmax into millions of homes. Do they have second thoughts about distributing these channels given their election denialism content? They won’t say.”
As Big Tech moves more aggressively against conservatives on their platforms, CNN offers quite a view on free speech: only allow our perspective or those we agree with and knee-cap our competitors.
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