Andrew Torba, CEO of free speech Twitter alternative Gab, joined Fox News’ Tucker Carlson on Tuesday to discuss Silicon Valley censorship.
“Andrew, did I just mistake that? According to Google, you have a responsibility to police the political views of people who use your app, and because you don’t, they’re kicking you off?” asked Carlson during the show, prompting Torba to reply, “Correct, Tucker.”
“So when we founded Gab about a year ago, we founded it specifically to avoid this purpose. I didn’t want to police speech. I believe in free speech for everybody, individual liberty for everybody, and the free flow of information for everybody,” explained Torba. “What’s happening in Silicon Valley right now is they’re using these arbitrary hate speech policies, which is stemming right out of Germany and of the EU, and they’re applying these to the entire Internet.”
“So the left likes to say, ‘If you don’t like the hate speech policies of Facebook and Twitter, why don’t you go build your own?’ So that’s what we did, and now what they’re doing is they’re saying, ‘You’re not allowed to do that either. We’re not going to let you have your app in our app stores,'” he continued. “You have a duopoly of Google and Apple that own and control 95 percent of the market both on mobile hardware and software distribution on that mobile hardware, so how are we supposed to compete, how are we supposed to build an alternative platform when we’re not allowed to be in these app stores?”
Carlson responded, claiming, “I mean this is the nightmare scenario people talk about when you study monopolies or duopolies in class. That they control everything to the extent that they crush any opposition, any innovation, any diversity.”
“I mean that’s what we have now isn’t it?” he asked.
“Absolutely, so what we’re seeing is a pretty classic duopoly, right? You have Apple and Google, again, controlling and owning 95+ percent of mobile hardware and mobile software, so you know, I’m a big believer in the free market, but I think the free market is rigged by these two companies, and I think that Gab is a pretty solid example of that anti-competitive behavior in action,” Torba declared.
“Yeah, I mean this is the least free market imaginable,” replied Carlson. “And just to be totally clear, the people who have been banned, that I’m aware of, from Twitter or Facebook, I mean these are not ISIS recruiters who are trying to convince others to go on suicide missions, these are people like Milo, who you may think is offensive, or outrageous, or whatever, but he’s not advocating violence, right?”
Torba then pointed out that, “Well here’s the thing too, it’s not even big names like Milo, it’s your aunt, it’s your little cousin.”
“Facebook is banning over a million accounts a day now for hate speech. This is absolutely absurd,” he proclaimed. “Who are these Silicon Valley tech giants, these modern day robber barons, to tell us as Americans with the First Amendment, what we can and cannot talk about, what opinions we can hold, and who not we can vote for.”
“It’s frightening,” Carlson concluded. “I don’t know why the government is standing back and letting this happen, it’s scary. Because they’re bought and paid for, that’s why.”
Following the segment, leftist media organizations, including Think Progress and Media Matters for America, quickly attacked Carlson for “defending” and “promoting” Gab, which they claimed was a “white nationalist” site.
“Tucker Carlson ignored Gab’s obvious appeal to white nationalists and invited the platform’s founder to defend the social media platform’s right to promote hate speech using Google and Apple app stores,” wrote Media Matters. Think Progress claimed Carlson “used his prime time spot on Fox News to promote a white nationalist social media site,” adding he was “bringing bigotry to an audience of millions.”
The Google Play store removed Gab’s app last month, despite the fact that it had already been up for several months, citing “hate speech” on the platform.
The social network is also banned from Apple’s App Store, having been rejected on numerous occasions, with Apple citing “objectionable” user content, despite the fact that flagged posts could also be found on social networks such as Twitter, which are readily available on the store.
Last month, Gab raised over $1 million in public investments, hitting the maximum amount allowed by regulations.