The North Carolina sisters known as “Diamond and Silk” have revealed in a series of tweets (see below) that Facebook has determined their content and brand are “unsafe to the community” without a fuller explanation, and in a decision that the social media network says is final.
This development occurs as CEO Mark Zuckerberg is set to testify before Congress about the rampant harvesting of personal data and privacy violations that has prompted demands across the ideological spectrum for Facebook to be regulated like a public utility.
Diamond and Silk, former Democrats who climbed aboard the Trump train primarily because of the then-candidate’s economic message, have created a huge following with a series of irreverent YouTube videos. They first achieved prominence in that regard after they rhetorically fired back at Megyn Kelly for accusing Donald Trump of misogyny at the famoust August 2015 GOP presidential debate. Google-owned YouTube has since de-monetized their channel. They also appeared with the GOP standard-bearer (himself a former Democrat and independent) at campaign rallies, The American Mirror noted.
Lynette “Diamond” Hardaway and Rochelle “Silk” Richardson claim that the back and forth with Facebook started about six months ago when they noticed that traffic on their Facebook page, which they created in December 2014, dropped precipitously, and millions of followers were no longer receiving notifications.
On Twitter, they called out Facebook for allegedly engaging in deliberate censorship and discrimination and wondered what could be unsafe about two black women expressing views in support of President Trump.
Trump supporters and others have accused the progressive tech giants of engaging in censorship of right-wing websites and individuals (or those perceived as harboring conservative leanings) through methods such as algorithm changes, shadow banning, throttling, de-platforming, and de-monetization. A number of personalities and accounts on the right have found themselves suspended for alleged hate speech or violations of terms of service under broad-brush or vague standards that they claim aren’t applied to their left-wing counterparts. These allegations have been denied by the Silicon Valley media corporations.
Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey raised eyebrows on Friday when he praised an article advocating for Democrats to run the entire country like they do in California and proposing that Republicans be thoroughly defeated at the polls, The Wrap reported.
Along those lines, PayPal co-founder Peter Thiel has implied that Silicon Valley has imposed a one-party dictatorship when it comes to politics. Trump backers also speculate whether Facebook would have reached the same conclusion about Diamond and Silk’s satire if the duo were Obama or Clinton fans.
Parenthetically, in a study of 50 online publishers released last month, The Western Journal concluded that modifications to Facebook’s news feeds have adversely affected conservatives’ market share more than liberals.The Outline came up with similar findings after Facebook adjusted the news feeds to de-emphasize content from news publishers.
In an appearance on Fox & Friends this morning, Diamond stressed that their content has nothing whatsoever to do with violence or illegality (the latter which often shows up on Facebook without being blocked) and summarized the non-safe-space situation.
“We understand that Facebook is a private entity. But they are open to the public, so when you’re open to the public, the rules have to be same for everybody.”
“When we signed up for Facebook, they didn’t say that this platform was only for liberal views.”
The defiant duo indicated that they plan to fight back against Facebook’s attempts at what they consider censorship of pro-Trump voices.
Facebook has not yet issued a public statement on the Diamond and Silk controversy. As this is a developing story, please check back for updates.
Update: In a statement, Facebook indicated that it is supposedly reconsidering its decision about classifying Diamond and Silk videos as unsafe, Fox News reported.
“We have communicated directly with Diamond And Silk about this issue. The message they received last week was inaccurate and not reflective of the way we communicate with our community and the people who run Pages on our platform. We have provided them with more information about our policies and the tools that are applicable to their Page and look forward to the opportunity to speak with them.”
In the clip below, Diamond and Silk responded to the Facebookstatement last night on The Ingraham Angle.