Skip to main content
×
Blacklisted Listed News Logo
Menu - Navigation
Menu - Navigation

Cited Sources

2nd Smartest Guy in the World
2nd Amendment Shirts
10th Amendment Center
Aaron Mate
Activist Post
AIER
Aletho News
Ammo.com
AmmoLand
Alliance for Natural Health, The
Alt-Market
American Free Press
Antiwar
Armstrong Economics
Art of Liberty
AUTOMATIC EARTH, The
Ben Bartee
Benny Wills
Big League Politics
Black Vault, The
BOMBTHROWER
Brandon Turbeville
Breaking Defense
Breitbart
Brownstone Institute
Burning Platform, The
Business Insider
Business Week
Caitlin Johnstone
Campus Reform
CAPITALIST EXPLOITS
Charles Hugh Smith
Children's Health Defense
CHRISTOPHE BARRAUD
Chris Wick
CIAgate
Citizen Free Press
Citizens for Legit Gov.
CNN Money
Collective Evolution
Common Dreams
Conscious Resistance Network
Corbett Report
Counter Signal, The
Cryptogon
Cryptome
Daily Bell, The
Daily Reckoning, The
Daily Veracity
DANERIC'S ELLIOTT WAVES
Dark Journalist
David Haggith
Defense Industry Daily
Defense Link
Defense One
Dennis Broe
DOLLAR COLLAPSE
DR. HOUSING BUBBLE
Dr. Robert Malone
Drs. Wolfson
Drudge Report
Economic Collapse, The
ECONOMIC POPULIST, The
Electronic Frontier Foundation
Ellen Brown
Emerald Robinson
Expose, The
F. William Engdahl
FAIR
Farm Wars
Faux Capitalist
FINANCIAL REVOLUTIONIST
Forbes
Foreign Policy Journal
FOREXLIVE
Foundation For Economic Freedom
Free Thought Project, The
From Behind Enemy Lines
From The Trenches
FUNDIST
Future of Freedom Foundation
Futurism
GAINS PAINS & CAPITAL
GEFIRA
Geopolitical Monitor
Glenn Greenwald
Global Research
Global Security
GM RESEARCH
GOLD CORE
Grayzone, The
Great Game India
Guadalajara Geopolitics
Helen Caldicott
Homeland Sec. Newswire
Human Events
I bank Coin
IEEE
IMPLODE-EXPLODE
Information Clearing House
Information Liberation
Infowars
Insider Paper
Intel News
Intercept, The
Jane's
Jay's Analysis
Jeff Rense
John Adams
John Pilger
John W. Whitehead
Jonathan Cook
Jon Rappoport
Jordan Schachtel
Just The News
Kevin Barret
Kitco
Last American Vagabond, The
Lew Rockwell
Le·gal In·sur·rec·tion
Libertarian Institute, The
Libertas Bella
LIBERTY BLITZKRIEG
LIBERTY Forcast
Liberty Unyielding
Market Oracle
Market Watch
Maryanne Demasi
Matt Taibbi
Medical Express
Media Monarchy
Mercola
Michael Snyder
Michael Tracey
Middle East Monitor
Mike "Mish" Shedlock
Military Info Tech
Mind Unleashed, The
Mint Press
MISES INSTITUTE
Mises Wire
MISH TALK
Money News
Moon of Alabama
Motherboard
My Budget 360
Naked Capitalism
Natural News
New American, The
New Eastern Outlook
News Deck
New World Next Week
Nicholas Creed
OF TWO MINDS
Off-Guardian
Oil Price
OPEN THE BOOKS
Organic Prepper, The
PANDEMIC: WAR ROOM
PETER SCHIFF
Phantom Report
Pierre Kory
Political Vigilante
Public Intelligence
Rair
Reclaim The Net
Revolver
Richard Dolan
Right Turn News
Rokfin
RTT News
Rutherford Institute
SAFEHAVEN
SAKER, The
Shadow Stats
SGT Report
Shadowproof
Slay News
Slog, The
SLOPE OF HOPE
Solari
South Front
Sovereign Man
Spacewar
spiked
SPOTGAMMA
Steve Kirsch
Steve Quayle
Strange Sounds
Strike The Root
Summit News
Survival Podcast, The
Tech Dirt
Technocracy News
Techno Fog
Terry Wahls, M.D.
TF METALS REPORT
THEMIS TRADING
Tom Renz
True Activist
unlimited hangout
UNREDACTED
Unreported Truths
Unz Review, The
VALUE WALK
Vigilant Citizen
Voltaire
Waking Times
Wall Street Journal
Wallstreet on Parade
Wayne Madsen
What Really Happened
Whitney Webb
winter oak
Wolf Street
Zero Hedge

How the Media Used Russiagate Conspiracy Theories to Create a News Cartel

Published: July 7, 2022 | Print Friendly and PDF
  Gab
Share

  • The Wall Street Journal reports that Facebook paid over $20 million to the New York Times and $15 million to the Washington Post in annual fees. Even more valuable than the big checks was Facebook's ability to push media content to its users. Last year, sources at several publishers were crediting Facebook News with massive traffic surges, but not everyone was equal.

  • "Many other U.S. news publishers are getting payments from Facebook to have their content featured in its news tab, but they only get a fraction of the sums paid to the Washington Post, the New York Times," the Wall Street Journal noted.

  • Facebook and the media had created a cartel in which media sites created paywalls to raise the value of their content and gain better deals with the social media monopoly. Zuckerberg's company offered its biggest media critics big checks in exchange for exclusive deals. Both sides claimed that they were "fighting misinformation" with what was really a shakedown and a cartel.

  • When the media accused Facebook of spreading conservative misinformation, the only defense was providing special privileges for the media. Despite the fundamental illegality of such cartels, Democrat politicians and the media openly pressured Facebook to promote "responsible" journalism, by which they meant their own political content, at the expense of "misinformation".

  • By then the entire debate about misinformation had boiled down to creating a two-tiered content system across Big Tech that would fund and push media content while suppressing rival material. This urgent need for a news cartel was described as the best way to meet the "threat to democracy" posed by the "wild west" of the internet. This cynical rhetoric carefully avoided any discussion about the benefits that would flow to the media from this arrangement.

  • Recent entries from the Washington Post, which was being paid $15 million, include, "Facebook Gives Gun Sellers 10 Strikes Before Ban" and "Facebook Fails Again to Detect Hate Speech in Ads": both of which went viral. The former taps into the new mania over gun control to manufacture yet another crisis involving Facebook. And crises reward the media cartel.

  • The two interlocking cartels, Big Tech and the media, became politically and then economically interdependent in a way that was both illegal and deeply dangerous to a free society. The lies, the conspiracy theories and the censorship are products of technopolitical collusion between two sets of corrupt companies that have devastated our politics, our culture and our country.

  • The two cartels set out to control our speech and our politics for their own power and profit. They did it by manufacturing a crisis and declaring that their abuses were the solution.

  • Both Big Media and Big Tech cartels need to be broken up before they break our society.

 

(Photo by Kirill Kudryavtsev/AFP via Getty Images)

In the fall of 2019, Facebook announced that it would be writing selected media outlets some very big checks. The launch of Facebook News was billed as a way to give consumers more access to information, but it was actually an attempt at appeasing big media companies.

Facebook, with its older and more conservative user base, had become the epicenter of election conspiracies from the Clinton campaign and its media allies. While Hillary Clinton and her associates were eager to shift the blame for her defeat by relaunching their existing Russiagate smears with false claims that Russian Facebook ads had tilted the election to Donald Trump, the media's obsession with Facebook was even more corruptly self-interested.

About a third of Americans regularly get their news through Facebook. The tech giant's algorithms had the ability to make or break the news media, and would go on to break the digital media empires of the Huffington Post, BuzzFeed, and others in the lefty clickbait brigade.

While Hillary wanted someone to blame for her failures, the media wanted leverage over the company that controlled its fate. The invention of a "fake news" or "misinformation" crisis, the term that the media pivoted to once President Trump made "fake news" his own, was used to persuade Big Tech companies to censor conservatives and promote media content.

Facebook News was a walled garden that pushed the content of the major papers behind Russiagate conspiracies and misinformation alarmism while profiting massively from it. The Russiagate Facebook conspiracy theories provided the rationale for censoring conservatives and for rewarding the media outlets spreading them with special promotions and lots of money.

The Wall Street Journal reports that Facebook paid over $20 million to the New York Times and $15 million to the Washington Post in annual fees. Even more valuable than the big checks was Facebook's ability to push media content to its users. Last year, sources at several publishers were crediting Facebook News with massive traffic surges, but not everyone was equal.

"Many other U.S. news publishers are getting payments from Facebook to have their content featured in its news tab, but they only get a fraction of the sums paid to the Washington Post, the New York Times," the Wall Street Journal noted.

Facebook and the media had created a cartel in which media sites created paywalls to raise the value of their content and gain better deals with the social media monopoly. Zuckerberg's company offered its biggest media critics big checks in exchange for exclusive deals. Both sides claimed that they were "fighting misinformation" with what was really a shakedown and a cartel.

Now that the deal between Big Tech and Big Media is set to lapse, there's panic in the presses.

In 2020, Zuckerberg had cut out the media middleman by influencing the election directly through the hundreds of millions in "Zuckerbucks" that were handed out to local election offices in primarily Democrat areas, effectively "privatizing" a national presidential election.

Rather than continue to hand out tens of millions to top media outlets, Facebook's CEO had written a much bigger check to atone for 2016 and put the Russia fake news smear to bed.

That's bad news for the media.

From its "Meta" renaming to the departure of COO Sheryl Sandberg to the algorithm shifts deprioritizing politics, Facebook is trying to leave the 2016 election behind. Zuckerberg is scrambling for a future for the company in virtual reality headsets and the "Metaverse," and imitating TikTok's short video clips, away from the former titular company's core product.

Meanwhile, Facebook has reported its first sizable loss of users ever.

The Facebook News walled garden going away would be bad news for the privileged media outlets who secured it using a shakedown campaign that depends on conspiracy theories involving the 2016 election. And the panic over the end of the dirty deal in media circles also shows how their election lies were incentivized by the need to create this corrupt arrangement.

When the media accused Facebook of spreading conservative misinformation, the only defense was providing special privileges for the media. Despite the fundamental illegality of such cartels, Democrat politicians and the media openly pressured Facebook to promote "responsible" journalism, by which they meant their own political content, at the expense of "misinformation".

By then the entire debate about misinformation had boiled down to creating a two-tiered content system across Big Tech that would fund and push media content while suppressing rival material. This urgent need for a news cartel was described as the best way to meet the "threat to democracy" posed by the "wild west" of the internet. This cynical rhetoric carefully avoided any discussion about the benefits that would flow to the media from this arrangement.

The ten million dollar checks certainly didn't hurt.

It's no coincidence that just as Facebook might stop writing big checks to the media, the media began discovering new content crises at the social media monopoly.

Recent entries from the Washington Post, which was being paid $15 million, include, "Facebook Gives Gun Sellers 10 Strikes Before Ban" and "Facebook Fails Again to Detect Hate Speech in Ads": both of which went viral. The former taps into the new mania over gun control to manufacture yet another crisis involving Facebook. And crises reward the media cartel.

Or they used to.

At the height of the media's shakedown of Facebook, the fake news business model was troubled while Facebook appeared to be on the rise, but now both are struggling to survive. Investors aren't buying Facebook's Metaverse nonsense and TikTok struck a serious blow to the social media monopoly's control of social spaces. Facebook, like some other FAANG giants like Netflix, no longer seems inevitable. With the company's stock price down, Zuckerberg may be less willing to spend tens of millions in blackmail money propping up the media's failing business model.

Parasites eventually kill the host. The media didn't deal a fatal blow to Facebook, but its drumbeat of attacks certainly didn't help the company. The media blamed Facebook for dominating digital advertising, but the idea that users and companies would flock back to their sites if Facebook goes the way of Myspace is every bit as delusional as Russiagate.

Facebook's corporate blackmail payments and Trump conspiracy theories helped prop up the media, but neither of those would ever last. The media's big bet on using Big Tech to create a cartel overlooked the fragility of the monopolies it was relying on. Despite recent setbacks, companies like Google, Facebook and Amazon still dominate the internet, but investors are beginning to question whether they can continue to endlessly grow and swallow up everything.

The two interlocking cartels, Big Tech and the media, became politically and then economically interdependent in a way that was both illegal and deeply dangerous to a free society. The lies, the conspiracy theories and the censorship are products of technopolitical collusion between two sets of corrupt companies that have devastated our politics, our culture and our country.

The two cartels set out to control our speech and our politics for their own power and profit. They did it by manufacturing a crisis and declaring that their abuses were the solution.

Both Big Media and Big Tech cartels need to be broken up before they break our society.

Daniel Greenfield, a Shillman Journalism Fellow at the Freedom Center, is an investigative journalist and writer focusing on the radical Left and Islamic terrorism.

The article above was reprinted with the kind permission of the David Horowitz Freedom Center.

Blacklisted News Summer Donation Drive

TOP TRENDING ARTICLES


PLEASE DISABLE AD BLOCKER TO VIEW DISQUS COMMENTS

Ad Blocking software disables some of the functionality of our website, including our comments section for some browsers.


Trending Now



BlackListed News 2006-2023
Privacy Policy
Terms of Service