Accuracy in Media

In a new piece, Vice reports on all of the manner in which TikTok has an incel problem – the truth being that some people are saying things on TikTok that some other people don’t like being said. The exercise of those free speech rights is not a problem however much some people seem to want to abolish them.

Vice’s headline, “TikTok Has an Incel Problem” and they go on “Toxic masculinity and incel language like #redpill can be found all over the app.” They then go on to insist that TikTok does not, as it should, delete all mentions and instances of such things as misogyny and so on.

TikTok does delete those matters which are clearly lawbreaking, as they both should and must. Modern day demands, as here go much further of course.

“Regarding why some incel-adjacent lexicon is allowed, and why others aren’t, it would be encouraging if TikTok were to share publicly, “

This is getting ridiculous. Lexicon means words in a certain vocabulary, adjacent means next to and incel seems to be boys who remain virgins rather longer than they’d like to be. So the demand is that TikTok must explain why it doesn’t censor words that are close to those used by unhappy teenagers?

Vice is a major media outlet, the TV station reaches 60 million households. The magazine has a distribution of 900,000 copies, the site gains near 30 million visits a month.

Readers deserve to be told the true story here. That some are using the necessary moderation of online sites for legal reasons to demand the erasure of views they simply do not like.

It’s not just readers, of course. Any retailer of news and words needs to be careful about demands to censor words and news. For once one place or area of life has been scrubbed clean then those demands will be applied elsewhere too.

That people say things you don’t like them saying on a social media site is not sufficient justification for them to be stopped from saying them. Media outlets, of all people, should understand this.

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