At this point in the failed Brexit and the forcible takeover of the US Capitol, no one is questioning the impact of monopolistic service platforms on the outcome of any election other than that of our neighbours’ community president. There is no point in knowing that these services were not originally designed to harm democracy, but rather to fulfill the technological dreams of a generation born of cold. The raw truth is that the search for the utility of their shareholders, their size, their interdisciplinary nature, and their strength in individual knowledge make them a very powerful tool for understanding, and thus for manipulating, the spirit of the state.
While we’re in Spain we’ve been campaigning since the summer is back, in the US they leave no one to get in the next day. Now it’s our turn mid-term Or renew the elections for half of the Congress and the Senate two years after the presidential election. The American “check and balance” system of balancing the three powers of the state makes the president, who is the executive branch in the separation of powers model, highly dependent on the majority in legislatures. Something that should have happened here were it not for the fact that the separation of powers is just nominal and we have a party system and not a democracy. But that will be for another day. The midterm elections are not just a referendum on the president (who usually loses them) but also indicate the remainder of his term. Indeed, when an American president, through his party, loses control of the Chambers (loss of the Senate suffices), he sees his chances of putting forward his own domestic reform program diminish and focuses on something in which he has more power over what will be desirable: foreign policy. For this reason alone, we humans subject to hyperinflation on the other side of the Atlantic should worry about the outcome of this election. But also because the technology services we receive for our data are regulated in the United States and what happens there will have an impact here in real time.
A recurring problem is the control of content by the platforms and the impact this has on the freedom of expression of each of their users. This is a discussion I’ve been talking about but that we always come back to because it’s existential: if Meta, Google, or Twitter are held responsible for the content of what their users post, as an editor, they’re going to have serious problems continuing to work. If this is not done, and my view is that because they are moderate and decide what to publish and what not, we will continue to fall into alternative facts and facts, destabilizing flag campaigns, harassment and demolition based on abusive behavior. We will not allow, for the sake of freedom of expression, not even in the bar always mentioned in the corner, the standard of normal Spanish behavior. And that’s my existence for all of us as a society that wants to continue to live in a civilized way. Since solving the problem means, de facto, the death of these platforms, everyone, regulators, service providers, states, are looking for solutions to schizophrenia that satisfy no one and which consist, in general, of little moderation but all disgust.
Looking at the midterms, we’ve once again run into this controversy ranging from “algorithmic bias” of Google’s email filters to social media moderation actions. Members of the Republican Party (GOP), who have gone into a drift in subjugating the archetypal truth of Jiménez del Oso, have complained in recent years that Google is censoring them (it doesn’t sound like much to me, I will say). And not just in searches, but in Gmail filters. This algorithmic bias was pointed out in a March 2020 study that was said to have shown that emails for collecting money from governors go directly to the folder. Spam emails. In recent months, Senate Republicans have struggled with online fundraising and backed away from Democrats, limiting their chances, or so they claim, to regain control of Congress. Despite the fact that Google questioned the study’s methodology, it has started a beta program, now fully functional, that allows emails from approved federal campaigns to bypass filters. Spam emails.
In August, TikTok revealed its strategy to combat misinformation, which included a ban on paid political content by influencers, following Facebook and Twitter They will also outline a series of measures to prepare for the November elections after a barrage of criticism for fueling the spread of false information during the previous elections. Among the actions, TikTok has included a polling station to “connect people” with “reliable information” about voting in more than 45 languages. This strategy was published just three days after the New York Times announced that due to its algorithm, scalability and number of users, the platform has the potential to become an “incubator” for misinformation. Some also fear that video and audio content in TikTok will be more difficult to moderate than text on other platforms.
The report from the Center for Bipartisan Politics, a Washington-based think tank made up of former workers on these platforms, believes these measures are insufficient and should be extended beyond the three months leading up to the election.
But there’s another twist to this whole muddy picture. The threat that the US Senate will be controlled by the Republican Party and, therefore, more hostile to Silicon Valley companies, which, as we have said, they accuse of censorship, is a fact that makes one wonder if the big tech companies are such a large number. States have an interest in the outcome of the elections. Blake Masters, a Trumpian candidate living in the reality of alternate realities, is running for Arizona and calling for the total “repeal” of Section 230, the rule that proves the irresponsibility of content platforms like Meta or Google. The mere prospect of losing that protection means a flood of lawsuits around the world, which, likely, will force them to shut down or “submerge,” a suggestion Zuckerberg brought to the table before choosing the metaverse as an escape route from regulators. Trump had already threatened to repeal Article 230 and it was the first time we saw it zuk In a suit and tie at the White House. But this time the proposal is gaining traction with the help of funding Peter Thiel – whose biographer the candidate worked for – the founder of PayPal, a dark and radical figure, with a lot of bad drooling and who is behind Palantir, a data analytics company reminiscent of the bad guy with a cat from James movies. Bond.
The victory of this type of candidate is also a matter of existence for American democracy, and perhaps ours. In this battle between who must die, whether it is platforms and acts of drunkenness or the rule of law, I am afraid to bet.
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