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Conspiracy or 'groupthink,' the result is the same

Conspiracy or 'groupthink,' the result is the same


Conspiracy or 'groupthink,' the result is the same

The topic was "truth-driven journalism in an era of censorship" – and the panelists expressed concern at the big role social media is playing in silencing conservative voices.

A panel of journalists at the recent National Religious Broadcasters convention in Nashville discussed the fact that the mainstream media and "Big Social" continue to censor conservative speech – and they say it's only getting worse. There's nothing that suggests it's a conspiracy of sorts, but Christopher Dolan of The Washington Times told the NRB crowd it's because they all have the same worldview.

"I don't think it's a strategic way that they are going about doing it, but I think there's a groupthink mentality that takes over," said Dolan. "And I think there is concern [among them] when people think for themselves – and the religious base gives [people] the ability to think for themselves, right?

"So [they've decided that] the more you get in the way of that, the more you can dictate what goes on."

According to panel member Christopher Ruddy of Newsmax, it's getting worse by the week in the world of high tech – and he didn't hesitate to use the "C" word.

"There's a level, now, of mendacity and conspiracy by some of these companies to block [content they don't agree with]," Ruddy stated. "A lot of media access points – Twitter, Facebook, Instagram – all work to block the story from the post being released by social media."

He cited a comment made by U.S. Senator Rand Paul (R-KY) as an example of the type of censorship journalists now face. "When we reported that Rand Paul said masks don't work, Newsmax could not post videos on some social media sites for a week," he noted.

"If [what they're doing] was illegal, you could file a RICO statute against some of these companies," he added.

And Dolan reported that he's seeing a relatively new censorship method being used more and more often: it's labeled as fact-checking.

"If we get fact-checked, they want to tell us what to put in stories," Dolan described. "There's nothing wrong in a story [but] they say that it's missing a study that they know about. So, they're going to block it because they don't like the content that's in it; not that it's false."

But Dolan concluded on an optimistic note, saying he finds hope in "common sense policies," in organizations committed to truth, and "the evolution of conservative groups with more access to social media."