Join us for the ecoTrain Question Of The Week: Do We Still Have Freedom Of Speech?


Did anyone notice what’s happened lately, and by lately i mean over the past few years and especially this past month! Censorship is something that is happening under our noses, and has been for quite a long time now. We have gotten used to our social feeds being censored by companies like Facebook, but that is what they do. They provide a feed that is based on what THEY want you to see. You Tube used to censor only the most radical and hate related or clearly abusive content. It appears that speaking out in public or sharing controversial views are as good as illegal in many parts of the developed world, and most of our news and media come from just a few huge companies.

YouTube have been censoring many things that have NOTHING TO DO with hate, or anything more than challenging the current system. A prime example is cryptocurrency, with many outlets banning any advertising or even mention of Bitcoin. YouTube channels have been deleted without any warning, and no one even knows what these drastic censorship moves are exactly due to. Another very disturbing example is the blanket censorship of information, products and even books that speak about COVD19. I have personally tried to publish a book very recently about Sustainable Living, and used the words COVID19 in the description, relating to how we need to protect ourselves from the repercussions of the pandemic. My book was rejected simply because it even mentioned that word! Therefore its safe to say we wont be reading much about alternative or independent views on the subject.

There are also many laws and restrictions imposed on companies to take down certain material. These laws are so draconian that companies like Google, Apple etc are not even allowed to share that accounts have been spied on or removed. These things are high level government actions that cannot be trifled with or even spoken about. Censorship is happening in many ways, and sometimes subversively.

Going back to Facebook feeds, and feeds in general.. These are also a very important form of censorship, that happens as we like certain posts and ignore others. Facebook want us to keep clicking and enjoying our posts so they can keep making money and getting more data and more power and more control over the entire Zeitgeist of our planet. We have all created comfortable social nests, and naturally censor alternative views as we unfollow those who say things that upset us.

Everything we write and say and do is tracked, recorded, and filtered by HUGE computer systems held by our Governments. It is so easy to do that almost if not every government now does it. Each government uses it differently, and the UK and USA are two examples of where our freedom of speech can be very severally affected by just the threat of being spied on, saying something wrong, and having repercussions such as flags placed on us. People are are visited regularly by the police for just saying something online that they deem to be suspicious. People are scared to say what they really think because the fear alone is enough to stop them speaking out.

Just two months ago the UK government announced a new plan to regulate social media companies such as YouTube, Facebook and Twitter. The proposals give the government’s media regulator, Ofcom, extensive powers to tell tech giants what speech they must suppress – and to punish them if they don’t. Is our democracy being eroded before our very eyes, or are these restrictions needed in these times of terrorism and fear?

So, this week the ecoTrain asks you what do YOU see going on!? Do we still have free speech and democracy? Is censorship justified to prevent terrorism or hate speech, or do you think those rules are being abused? What do you think we can do to change this? Is protesting even legal anymore? What is a good way to protest in this digital age?



"Q. Io We Still Have Free Speech Or Democacy?

- We welcome everyone to join us and post your answer to this QOTW.

- Your answer can be a written post, a video, or any way you wish to express yourself.

- You can post anytime from now until Tuesday 12th May.

- You must Subscribe and Post to the ecoTrain Community to post.

- Please also post a link to your post in the comments so that I will be sure to find it and add it to the weekly tie-up post.

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