WASHINGTON, D.C. –-(Ammoland.com)- During the 2020 Presidential election cycle, I noticed that Facebook fact-checkers were marking truthful articles about Kamala Harris’s stance on the Second Amendment as false!?
Two articles, in particular, caught my attention. One-piece was from Cam Edwards that ran in Bearing Arms. The other article was written by Gun Owners of America’s (GOA) Texas Director Rachel Malone and ran in the Houston Courant. The gist of both was that Harris doesn’t believe that American individuals have the right to bear arms. Both reports cited an Amicus brief filed in the landmark Heller case written and signed by the Vice-Presidential candidate.
In the Amicus brief, written in Harris’s time as the California Attorney General, she argued that the individual does not have the right to bear arms. Malone and Edwards both used this Amicus brief as a basis for their stories. When people shared these stories on Facebook, the mega platform’s non-U.S.-based truth-checkers “fact-checked” both articles as “false.”
Facebook placed a large overlay on top of the articles that redirected readers to the fact-checkers own website. In this case, the fact-checker was the Agence France-Presse (AFP). The AFP is a French Government-funded news agency. The AFP is run differently from organizations like PBS or NPR. While their governments fund all three, Both PBS and NRP are independent of their governments. In the case of the AFP, French government officials sit on its board and have direct control over how the AFP makes decisions.
I worked at Facebook in the past. I walked away from the Social Media giant because of how far the company drifted to the left of the political spectrum. Facebook started as a free speech platform but changed over the years that I was employed there. I just couldn’t be a part of what it became, so I walked away, but my time there gave me an insight into how things worked. I knew a program and not a human had a robot hand in the flagging.
I decided to experiment to see what in these articles triggered the “false” flag. I posted the original Amicus brief with zero comments. It was just a link to the official brief by itself. Immediately Facebook marked it as “false.” So, after Facebook talked about how it was snuffing out foreign election interference, it turned over the keys to the castle to the French Government.
I used my internal contacts at Facebook to open an “Oops Report.” An Oops Report is an internal ticket that employees use when something is wrong. I also reached out to the tech giant’s press department to get a comment on what I found.
Instead of replying to me, the company deleted my FB account and banned me for life, from the platform.
Facebook did not give me an explanation for the ban. They just deleted my account and informed me that I was no longer welcome on the platform. My internal contacts opened another Oops Report to get my account restored. It was denied and then escalated to the highest levels possible. The answer was simple: Facebook would not fix my account, and I caught a lifetime ban.
I used Facebook for two reasons. The first is to keep in contact with my relatives in Europe. For those that don’t know, I am married to an Italian, and most of my wife’s family lives in Sicily. The second reason is that it is where I shared my articles. I had a vibrant community of pro-gun supporters. Both were now gone. Eventually, Facebook would remove the false flag from the reports but refused to lift the personal ban.
In my official compacity as the Virginia State Director of GOA, I spoke to Rob Olson of the Olson law firm about what happened. Rob Olson is the lead attorney for GOA and the lawyer who argued the bump stock case in the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals. He suggested that I file a complaint with the Federal Election Commission (FEC). Facebook appeared to be protecting the Biden/Harris campaign. This monitoring and censoring of negative posts about the Biden Campaign appeared to be an unreported in-kind donation. I was interested, but I couldn’t afford all the legal fees.
GOA saw that Facebook was moving against pro-gun reporters and decided to fund the complaint. For months the complaint sat without a response but the Olson law firm was persistent about getting an answer. Recently when we got word that the FEC ruled against our complaint, and now we have the reason we lost in the official and final response found here “Federal Election Commission (FEC) MUR 7812 Response Letter to Complainant Jon Crump Re SOR” and embedded below.
Trump appointee, and Federal Election Commission (FEC) Commissioner Sean Cooksey, determined that Facebook was exempt from campaign finance laws because he believes that Facebook is a “media entity” much like AmmoLand News or the New York Times.
To me, this determination doesn’t make sense. Facebook is a company that steadfastly maintains that it is NOT a media entity and it enjoys special protection under “47 U.S. Code § 230 – protection for private blocking and screening of offensive material” and just like Google, it doesn’t produce content.
Funny how Facebook did not dispute this designation as a media entity when it is convenient and but then continues to hide behind 230 protections. But not all is lost. This complaint let them know that some people and organizations are willing to fight back against the Silicon Valley giants.
It will be interesting to see how Facebook Inc declares its entity status going forward in light of this new “Media” determination by the U.S Federal Election Commission?
I want to thank GOA for its financial and motivational support. I also want to thank AmmoLand News for its continued support. And lastly, I want to thank my attorneys, Rob and Bill Olson, and the rest of their legal team.
We can and will win. I believe in death by 1000 paper cuts. I will be ever vigilant, ever free, and I will keep in the fight.
Federal Election Commission (FEC) MUR 7812 Response Letter to Complainant Jon Crump Re SOR
- FEC MUR 7812 Closing Letter to Complainant Jon Crump
- FEC MUR 7812 Closing Letter to Complainant Robert Olson
MUR 7812 Closing Letter to Complainant Jon Crump
FEC MUR 7812 Closing Letter to Complainant Robert Olson
About John Crump
John is a NRA instructor and a constitutional activist. John has written about firearms, interviewed people of all walks of life, and on the Constitution. John lives in Northern Virginia with his wife and sons and can be followed on Twitter at @crumpyss, or at www.crumpy.com.