As technology platforms, it’s very dangerous for us to get into that space [of moderating views expressed by users], because either you’re asking us to change the information that we provide to people based on an ideological view, which I don’t think is what people want tech companies to be.
That’s a valid position to take, except these companies are already making tons of judgment calls on what kind of information can be shared every day. As Nathaniel Persily, James B. McClatchy Professor of Law at Stanford Law School, pointed out during the discussion, “Each one of these platforms makes decisions about what goes at the top and what goes at the bottom. …Those are value judgments, sometimes motivated by engagement.”
The problem here is primarily this: Facebook, Twitter, and Google want to have this both ways. They want to be the gatekeepers of the internet because it benefits them to have as many users visit and use their services possible. They also don’t want the responsibility of that role.
Do we really want social networks deciding what we should read and see? Deciding what viewpoints are OK and which ones are not?