(Natural News) One of the things that drives us all nuts about YouTube, Facebook and other tech platforms is that they ban us without explanation. There’s no due process, just a murky “voodoo” process where they never really explain what they’re banning or why they’re banning it.
In contrast to that, I’m working diligently to share with our rapidly expanding user base the exact reasons why we’re either banning or geo-restricting a few videos.
So far, we’ve banned one video due to a copyright claim. That video was called “The Magnitsky Act” and it was a documentary about the very mysterious events surrounding Bill Browder of Hermitage Capital Management. If you want to delve into a real mystery, look into that whole thing. In any case, someone posted the entire documentary without permission, and we were requested to take it down by the documentary owner. We verified the request and took down the video, as we honor intellectual property.
We’ve also removed a couple of music videos that was obviously copyrighted. A few people have tried to post full Hollywood films, too, which we’ve rejected.
Geo-restricting of “Holocaust Denial” videos
Our goal with Brighteon.com is to grow it into a global video platform for free speech. To achieve this, we must comply with local laws concerning content. And it turns out that denying the Holocaust is a crime in 15 countries.
Seriously. It’s a crime. People have actually been prosecuted and thrown in jail for denying the Holocaust. It’s illegal in Germany, Israel, Switzerland and even the UK, I believe.
Personally, I think laws that criminalize offensive speech are themselves fascist, authoritarian laws that smack of precisely the kind of tyranny demonstrated by Adolf Hitler. But I don’t write the laws in other countries, so it’s not up to me. In order to prevent Brighteon.com from being completely blocked in these 15 countries, we have to selectively block Holocaust denial videos in those countries.
Now, for the record, I think Holocaust denialism is abhorrent and ludicrous. But I also think it’s important to hear the opinions of people who we find highly offensive, because if we’re going to allow governments to tell us what we’re allowed to speak or think, then we’re really living in a kind of “Third Reich” world of controlled information where we aren’t free in the first place. Freedom includes the freedom to speak very offensive things, and that’s why Brighteon.com doesn’t ban such videos unless they directly promote violence or engage in other gross violations of our rules.
So when a video was posted on Brighteon.com — entitled “100% Proof: Jewish Holocaust Hoax is a Sick Lie” — we did two things with it. First, we “de-listed” the video, which means it isn’t banned outright, but it doesn’t appear in any search results or video lists. We did this deliberately, but we didn’t ban the video, meaning that people can still watch it if they go directly to the video view page.
Secondly, we geo-restricted the video so that it cannot be viewed from the 15 countries where Holocaust denialism is literally a criminal act. See this screen shot to take a look at what this looks like if you try to view the video from Germany or Israel, for example:
If you watch the video from the USA, however, you can watch the full video. The red bar “de-listed” warning appears across the top of the video, but the video isn’t banned outright. This also means that people in Germany who really, really want to watch the video could sign up for a VPN, choose an IP address in the USA, and then watch the video through that VPN.
I hope you agree this is the correct action on our part. As an outspoken champion of free speech, I strongly support the right of people to speak even if their speech is highly offensive. That’s why I’m not outright banning these videos. After all, if we deny the existence of all the videos of Holocaust denialism, then don’t we actually become Holocaust denialism denialists? These views are important for the world to be able to see so that we know such views continue to exist.
We will, however, de-list these videos simply to state strongly that the views expressed in such videos are not endorsed by Brighteon.com. This “de-listing” status results in a red bar appearing across the top of the video, and the video itself will not appear in any search results or video lists. So far, we have applied this de-listing status to a total of four videos, all of which were focused on the Holocaust issue.
“Blasphemy” and attacks on Islam
In a similar vein, it turns out that attacking the Prophet of Islam is a criminal act in certain other countries — mostly Islamic fundamentalism countries where nobody watches our videos anyway. Currently, we haven’t seen any videos that mock the religious leaders of Islam, but if such videos are posted on Brighteon.com, we will geo-restrict those individual videos from the Islamic fundamentalism countries where such speech is criminalized.
This is being done, as with the Holocause denialism issue above, to keep Brighteon.com legal in those countries so that all the other videos on our platform can be viewed in those countries. This won’t affect the viewing of these videos everywhere else, of course. And according to our current analytics, the views on Brighteon.com from such countries are far less than 1/10th of one percent of our total views.
Once again, I personally think these laws that criminalize free speech are authoritarian and stupid. But I don’t write those laws. For Brighteon.com to exist as a global platform, we are forced to restrict certain videos from certain countries. Such are the realities of operating in a global political ecosystem where many governments of the world have criminalized certain types of speech.
I don’t like it, but it’s the reality of our world today.
The most important thing in all this is that we are being transparent with you about the very limited circumstances under which videos must be blocked or banned. There’s not some secret voodoo black box at work here. My goal is to be up front and fully transparent about de-listing, geo-restricting or banning certain videos. Note that such actions have so far only affected less than 0.01% of the videos posted on Brighteon.com. In other words, 99.99% of videos are not banned or restricted in any way whatsoever.
The big question: Who gets to decide “truth?”
As I explain in my video below, the bigger issue in all this surrounds the question: Who gets to decide “truth” in our society today?
Given that we’ve all been systematically lied to about history, medicine, science, money, current events and more, it is a rational, intelligent practice to question everything we’re told. That’s why I don’t ban all the Flat Earth videos, either. Although I disagree with the Flat Earth movement’s conclusions, I also believe that asking really big questions is an important exercise in human awakening.
Why is it a crime to ask questions about the history of World War II? Why is it a crime to question the religious leaders of Islam? Why have countries criminalized speech they don’t like, even when such authoritarianism echoes the very same evil regime (Third Reich) that they claim to have defeated? Aren’t they actually reinvigorating the tyranny of Adolf Hitler when they criminalize speech surrounding the topic of the Holocaust?
“The UK-based Index on Censorship organization has slammed Big Tech’s banning of Infowars, releasing a statement asserting that all “provocative” speech should be protected,” writes Paul Joseph Watson for InfoWars.com, which has been subjected to a flurry of de-platforming bans off nearly every major tech platform. “The Index on Censorship, which is chaired by award-winning London Times journalist David Aaronovitch, released a statement decrying the ban.”
Index believes that all speech – eccentric, contentious, heretical, unwelcome, provocative and even bigoted – should be protected unless it directly incites violence.
Social media and tech companies — as private entities — have the right to set whatever terms they choose, but the patchwork, inconsistent and opaque terms of service approach to policing speech online leaves them open to political and societal pressures. We strongly encourage the adoption of terms of service policies that maintain the widest possible scope for free speech online.
This means we – as users – will have to tolerate the fraudulent, the offensive and the idiotic. The ability to express contrary points of view, to call out racism, to demand retraction and to highlight obvious hypocrisy depend on the ability to freely share information across the evenest possible playing field.
Any other course of action will – in the end – diminish everyone’s right to free expression.
Until free speech is truly protected across our world, we use the best tools we have like Brighteon.com and GAB.ai
My job at Brighteon.com is to give you a platform that protects your free speech to the maximum level tolerated by current law, country by country. My hope is to work toward a future world where all speech is protected, including offensive speech. And it is precisely video platforms like Brighteon.com that can help us all achieve that goal.
Remember, too, that the political Left in America today wants to criminalize essentially all “conservative” speech. They want to criminalize “Climate denialism” in the same way that “Holocaust denialism” is criminalized. These are very dangerous, authoritarian agendas. What the Leftists want today is a society where only a single point of view is legally allowed on any given topic. Any deviation from that “official” opinion will be criminalized or censored off the web. They want, in other words, an authoritarian “thought police” regime. That’s what YouTube has already become, and that’s why we need platforms like Brighteon.com to exist.
We had 350+ new channels join Brighteon.com just yesterday, and its popularity is exploding. Join now at this link.
Watch my video below for a more details and hilarious explanation (with slight profanity) of everything mentioned above: