Help us maintain our independence from the whims and dictates of monolithic advertising networks who have lost their collective minds by surrendering human oversight to bots and algos that flag "unsafe" words and phrases they have been programmed to identify.
It's bad enough that many of these algorithms appear to have inherent biases programmed into them. But in our opinion, what's arguably worse & more insidious is that they are not "intelligent" enough to consider the context and allow legitimate debate to take place among adults. This has been particularly clear in the context of COVID-19 and its various vaccines. If an "unsafe" term (such as Ivermectin, for example) is flagged in a user post, that's the end of the inquiry. No more investigation is conducted and if we, as a publisher of user-generated content, refuse to delete the post, we are penalized.
UPDATE: In an interesting plot twist, shortly after I first posted this message explaining our so-called "independence crowdfunder," the algorithm driving Google's personalized news feed decided I might be interested in a New York Times article exploring a recent federal district court ruling coming out of the Western District of Louisiana alleging government overreach with respect to pressuring social media giants to censor "misinformation" during the pandemic (click here to read the original article in its entirety). Well, it turns out, Google was right. How could I not be intrigued by this development? And now, having read more about the decision, some of the head-scratching obstacles we've had to deal with in the advertising space are starting to make a lot more sense.
We do not agree with this policy, nor do we believe it is fair to treat adults in this manner. That's why we routinely go to bat for our customers, pushing back on penalties for alleged "policy violations" and arguing for your right to discuss and debate controversial topics. Unfortunately, fighting back, rather than rolling over, costs us revenue as the review process tends to be lengthy and there is no guarantee the major advertiser will agree with our objections in a given case. But that doesn't stop us from standing up for what we believe is right.
And speaking of losing their minds, it would appear that several major social media platforms, including behemoths like Twitter and Reddit, have done just that in recent weeks. Meanwhile, we continue to do what we can with the limited resources at our disposal. They operate on billion-dollar budgets. We operate on peanuts. But unlike the big players in our space, we always put our customers first and always have your backs. You can count on us to be there for you.
Government, Social Media Giants & the First Amendment
Below are links to additional recent content providing an interesting backdrop to circumstances leading us to launch our current crowdfunding campaign. And by the way, we understand that most site visitors will have little to no interest in participating in our crowdfunder. How you choose to support Investor Village is a private, personal choice. You may do it by inviting other investors to join you for discussion on our boards. You may be an active poster whose content attracts other readers. You may already be a paying member and see no need to make additional financial contributions. We respect your individual decisions, and regardless of your approach to supporting us, we think the vast majority of you will be interested in learning more about alleged coordinated actions between the government and social media giants as it relates to the intersection of content users post and First Amendment protections. Click the links below to learn more.
Social Media Shenanigans - What Threads v. Twitter means for Privacy & Censorship
We also think you may be interested in learning more about how the battle between two multi-billionaire tech titans may affect important social media issues, including censorship and privacy of user data. Click the links below to learn more.
Your support has kept us going since we first opened our virtual doors over 17 years ago. We couldn't do it without you!
*CLICK HERE* to support IV with a one-time contribution via credit card or PayPal account.
For those wishing to pay by check, please make it out to "Investor Village" and send to:
P.O. Box 2958
Marrero, LA 70073
Thank you in advance for your continued generosity!
Ralph "Blue" Kidd
CEO, Investor Village