On Friday night’s ludicrously titled All Things Considered, NPR devoted almost seven minutes to the whining of left-wing social-media censors – or as NPR put it, “the people working to safeguard voting” – complaining that the 2024 election won’t be as free of “election lies” as 2020 because conservatives are fighting back.
The reporters were Miles Parks and Shannon Bond. The only Republican interviewed was warning of how hypersensitive the right-wingers are to censorship over "misinformation," and nobody mentioned the Hunter Biden laptop or the Chinese lab-leak theory of the Covid pandemic:
MILES PARKS: I was talking about this with Wesley Wilcox, who's a Republican election supervisor in Marion County, Fla. And he said starting last year, he literally couldn't use the word misinformation around Republican voters anymore.
WESLEY WILCOX: In Republican circles, misinformation is a dog whistle, you know? It blew up, and all of a sudden, man, you got skewered if you even mentioned the word.
MILES PARKS: And our reporting found this backlash is being felt everywhere that's connected to election information. It's research. It's affected the federal government. It's affecting the social media companies. They're all gun-shy, as Wilcox put it, due to a real fear that they'll be targeted.
NPR even interviewed Nina Jankowicz, the foiled federal censor. She's not in the radio story, but she is there in the online story:
As Nina Jankowicz sees it, the opening salvo came in the spring of 2022, when a right-wing campaign quickly snuffed out a Department of Homeland Security initiative called the Disinformation Governance Board...
After a barrage of death threats and abuse, Jankowicz resigned, and DHS scrapped the board altogether. Jankowicz told NPR that the timid effort by the federal government to defend her or push back against the allegations sent a clear message.
"That showed ... that it was open season on researchers, on civil servants, on anyone who was working in this space," Jankowicz said.
So leftists trying to keep Trump and his "MAGA extremists" out of office are "researchers and civil servants," not terribly disguised campaign operatives who "fortify elections."
Late in the story, Bond and Parks turn to warning that "trust and safety" bureaucrats inside social media companies, the ones who were so eager to work with the Democrats and suppress damaging narratives to Biden, have been curtailed, especially at Twitter/X:
SHANNON BOND: Elon Musk - right? - who now owns it - he has undone years of work. He's eliminated the election integrity team entirely, and he's made changes to the platform that just make it a lot harder to find credible information.
AILSA CHANG, anchor: Exactly. OK, so if all of these different players - like, the tech platforms, the researchers, the federal government - if they are all sort of stepping back, I guess, where does that leave us heading into a presidential election year?
BOND: Well, Ailsa, we know when there is a vacuum of information, you know, that opens the door for even more rumors, conspiracy theories and lies to proliferate.
PARKS: And those lies have real-world effects. I mean, we saw that on January 6.
It's fair to be alarmed about the "Trump won in a landslide" messagers. But NPR and other liberal media outlets obsess over that and ignore all the other cases where social-media giants censored conservative narratives that have turned out to be true.