One high-profile company has decided to suspend its Facebook account pre-emptively in response to the social media giant’s ideologically-driven suppression.
So much for a robust marketplace of ideas.
CrossFit, a famously high-intensity exercise regimen, made its decision after Facebook deleted one of its user groups, with near two million followers.
Although the platform has since reinstated the group, its administrators have yet to provide a reason for their seemingly arbitrary decision.
Their reversal comes too little, too late for CrossFit.
In a press release, the company offered compelling reasons for why they reached the breaking point:
CrossFit, Inc. defends relentlessly the right of its affiliates, trainers, and athletes to practice CrossFit, build voluntary CrossFit associations and businesses, and speak openly and freely about the ideas and principles that animate our views of exercise, nutrition, and health. This website—and, until recently, CrossFit’s Facebook and Instagram accounts—has long cataloged CrossFit’s tireless defense of its community against overreaching governments, malicious competitors, and corrupt academic organizations.
Recently, Facebook deleted without warning or explanation the Banting7DayMealPlan user group. The group has 1.65 million users who post testimonials and other information regarding the efficacy of a low-carbohydrate, high-fat diet. While the site has subsequently been reinstated (also without warning or explanation), Facebook’s action should give any serious person reason to pause, especially those of us engaged in activities contrary to prevailing opinion.
Facebook and its properties host and oversee a significant share of the marketplace of public thought. To millions of individuals and communities across the world, Facebook and its properties remain the platforms where ideas and information are exchanged. Facebook thus serves as a de facto authority over the public square, arbitrating a worldwide exchange of information as well as overseeing the security of the individuals and communities who entrust their ideas, work, and private data to this platform. This mandates a certain responsibility and assurance of good faith, transparency, and due process.
CrossFit, Inc., as a voluntary user of and contributor to this marketplace, can and must remove itself from this particular manifestation of the public square when it becomes clear that such responsibilities are betrayed or reneged upon to the detriment of our community.
Whether such action will dissuade Facebook from operating as de-facto speech police remains unclear.
With continuing bias against contrarians – and conservatives – the Trump campaign is “checking out” alternative social networks.