Thursday, August 24, 2017

Leftist Tech Companies Rely on Discredited SPLC to Demonetize Conservative Critics of Islam (VIDEO)

You know, it's not a lot of money, but my Amazon affiliates blogging has been keeping me interested and returning to the blog day after day. Frankly, the books and intellectual stimulation have been the fun for me this summer. Political blogging has been so-so, and I'd probably be doing a lot less of it if my side gig with the Amazon books were to go away.

I'd been thinking about how compared to Google (AdSense, etc.), Amazon's been pretty hands off. I appreciate it and I think that approach deserves respect and promotion. But now I come to find out that even Amazon's been in on the "demonetizing" attacks against un-PC views. That bums me out. Not because I'm going to lose my side business. But because I was naive to think that the Bezos people were holding themselves to a higher standard, staying above the fray of hateful leftist politics. Boy, not so much it turns out.

Check this mind-boggling story of complete media lack of self-awareness, at ProPublica. Really, these people, and I'm talking now about the journalists writing the story, think they're doing something noble and just when in fact what they're doing is ignorant and evil.

Here's another reason why I hate politics right now.

See, at the safe link, "Despite Disavowals, Leading Tech Companies Help Extremist Sites Monetize Hate":
Most tech companies have policies against working with hate websites. Yet a ProPublica survey found that PayPal, Stripe, Newsmax and others help keep more than half of the most-visited extremist sites in business.

Because of its “extreme hostility toward Muslims,” the website is considered an active hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center and the Anti-Defamation League. The views of the site’s director, Robert Spencer, on Islam led the British Home Office to ban him from entering the country in 2013.

But its designation as a hate site hasn’t stopped tech companies — including PayPal, Amazon and Newsmax — from maintaining partnerships with Jihad Watch that help to sustain it financially. PayPal facilitates donations to the site. Newsmax — the online news network run by President Donald Trump’s close friend Chris Ruddy — pays Jihad Watch in return for users clicking on its headlines. Until recently, Amazon allowed Jihad Watch to participate in a program that promised a cut of any book sales that the site generated. All three companies have policies that say they don’t do business with hate groups.

Jihad Watch is one of many sites that monetize their extremist views through relationships with technology companies. ProPublica surveyed the most visited websites of groups designated as extremist by either the SPLC or the Anti-Defamation League. We found that more than half of them — 39 out of 69 — made money from ads, donations or other revenue streams facilitated by technology companies. At least 10 tech companies played a role directly or indirectly in supporting these sites.

Traditionally, tech companies have justified such relationships by contending that it’s not their role to censor the Internet or to discourage legitimate political expression. Also, their management wasn’t necessarily aware that they were doing business with hate sites because tech services tend to be automated and based on algorithms tied to demographics.

In the wake of last week’s violent protest by alt-right groups in Charlottesville, more tech companies have disavowed relationships with extremist groups. During just the last week, six of the sites on our list were shut down. Even the web services company Cloudflare, which had long defended its laissez-faire approach to political expression, finally ended its relationship with the neo-Nazi site The Daily Stormer last week.

“I can’t recall a time where the tech industry was so in step in their response to hate on their platforms,” said Oren Segal, director of the ADL’s Center on Extremism. “Stopping financial support to hate sites seems like a win-win for everyone.”

But ProPublica’s findings indicate that some tech companies with anti-hate policies may have failed to establish the monitoring processes needed to weed out hate sites. PayPal, the payment processor, has a policy against working with sites that use its service for “the promotion of hate, violence, [or] racial intolerance.” Yet it was by far the top tech provider to the hate sites with donation links on 23 sites, or about one-third of those surveyed by ProPublica. In response to ProPublica’s inquiries, PayPal spokesman Justin Higgs said in a statement that the company “strives to conscientiously assess activity and review accounts reported to us.”

After Charlottesville, PayPal stopped accepting payments or donations for several high-profile white nationalist groups that participated in the march. It posted a statement that it would remain “vigilant on hate, violence & intolerance.” It addresses each case individually, and “strives to navigate the balance between freedom of expression” and the “limiting and closing” of hate sites, it said.

After being contacted by ProPublica, Newsmax said it was unaware that the three sites that it had relationships with were considered hateful. “We will review the content of these sites and make any necessary changes after that review,” said Andy Brown, chief operating officer of Newsmax.

Amazon spokeswoman Angie Newman said the company had previously removed Jihad Watch and three other sites identified by ProPublica from its program sharing revenue for book sales, which is called Amazon Associates. When ProPublica pointed out that the sites still carried working links to the program, she said that it was their responsibility to remove the code. “They are no longer paid as an Associate regardless of what links are on their site once we remove them from the Associates Program,” she said...
Still more (FWIW).

(And recall the SPLC has been so widely discredited, even on the left, that's it's beyond logic that these idiots at ProPublica would be so reliant on it.)

And from earlier, "Pamela Geller Banned (Then Restored) by PayPal."

Finally, here's Robert Spencer on Tucker's show the other night: