This video says about itself:
Facebook bans Venezuela’s left-leaning news network
14 August 2018
Telesur English, a multi-state-funded Latin American news network, says that Facebook has removed its page for the second time this year without any specific reason being provided. RT America’s Dan Cohen reports.
By WT Whitney Jr in the USA:
Friday, August 24, 2018
Facebook filtering out news that doesn’t bolster US foreign policy
Individually on their Facebook pages they are communicating with, on average, 338 so-called “friends.”
Editors, the media and political commentators are similarly entranced. One unpretentious website receiving the present writer’s contributions claims 89,834 Facebook friends and another, 125,060 of them.
But now anyone dealing with political news and analyses of a progressive nature has reason to re-evaluate, even to draw back. Facebook apparently is now primed to censor that kind of information and discussion.
The latter has frequently referred to the failed violent anti-government coup of August 4 as an “apparent” or “alleged” coup while identifying it as a future pretext for repression by Venezuela’s government.
Venezuelanalysis.com, almost alone, has provided English-language news and views that “challenge the corporate mainstream media narrative on Venezuela.”
Recently that platform has reported on “the growing international campaign to End US and Canadian Sanctions against Venezuela.”
On August 9 Facebook removed the website’s account from its rolls. It was restored two days later. There were no explanations.
In 2005, the government of former Venezuelan president Hugo Chavez, vilified by the US government, took the lead in forming TeleSUR news service which has provided information on resistance and integration movements throughout Latin America and the Caribbean.
TeleSUR’s English-language page briefly disappeared from Facebook in January 2018 and again on August 13 — for two days on that occasion.
These disruptions of two Facebook accounts are, by themselves, of no great moment.
At a press briefing on July 31, Facebook’s chief operating officer Sheryl Sandberg indicated that “32 pages and accounts from Facebook and Instagram” had been removed because they “involve and co-ordinate inauthentic behaviour.”
TeleSUR English and the Venezuelanalysis may have been among the offenders.
The social media giant announced on May 17: “We’re doubling the number of people who work on safety and security and using technology like artificial intelligence to more effectively block fake accounts. [Additionally] we’re more actively working with outside experts, governments and other companies because we know that we can’t solve these challenges on our own … Today, we’re excited to launch a new partnership with the Atlantic Council.”
The context is a Facebook damage-control mission undertaken presumably to shore up profitability.
The social media giant came under criticism in Washington for allowing private information to fall into the hands of Cambridge Analytica.
The office of influential Republican Senator Mark Warner
Senator Warner is not a Republican, but a Democrat. But he belongs so strongly to the corporate right-wing of the Democratic party that the mistake is understandable.
in July issued a draft white paper titled, in part, “Proposals for Regulation of Social Media.”
Facebook outlined a plan to “outsource many of the most sensitive political decisions” and henceforth to rely upon the Atlantic Council and its Digital Forensic Research Lab.
According to Reuters, the Lab uses “its own software and other tools [and] sorts through social media postings for patterns.”
The Washington-based Atlantic Council, founded in 1961, takes in $21 million in revenue annually. By means of “galvanising its uniquely influential network of global leaders”, the council claims to foster “co-operation between North America and Europe that began after World War II.”
Drawing together “political leaders, academics, military officials, journalists and diplomats in an effort to further the values set forth in the North Atlantic Treaty”, the council is supposedly a “network facilitator” that, according to the New York Times, offers “access to United States and foreign government officials in exchange for contributions.”
For one critic, the council is “a leading geopolitical strategy think tank seen as a de facto PR agency for the US government and Nato military alliance.”
The Atlantic Council is most certainly aligned with the objectives of US foreign policies.
Now Facebook is using the council as authenticator-in-chief of international news and views flowing through its portals.
On both accounts, therefore, Facebook may have already lost any claim to promoting the free flow of political information.