Despite its frequent denials that it practices “shadowbanning” — the covert censorship of content without notifying the censored — Facebok applied for and received a U.S. patent for shadowbanning technology last month, according to a report in the New American.
According to the report, Facebook received a patent for technology that would limit the reach of blocked content while continuing to “display the blocked content to the commenting user such that the commenting user is not made aware that his or her comment was blocked.”
Via New American:
Despite the fact that Facebook executives denied the practice in congressional testimony in April, the company was awarded a patent by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) earlier this month for an automated system that would “receive a list of proscribed content and block comments containing the proscribed content by reducing the distribution of those comments to other viewing users” while continuing to “display the blocked content to the commenting user such that the commenting user is not made aware that his or her comment was blocked.” A better definition of shadow banning would be hard to write.
Multiple Silicon Valley companies have denied “shadowbanning” before congress even after being exposed for it. Even left-wing news outlet Vice admitted that Twitter engages in the practice against conservatives, despite Twitter’s repeated claims to the contrary. Facebook, meanwhile, was recently outed by Project Veritas for using a “deboosting” code against unwanted content, including content from conservative users.
The fact that a company patents technology does not necessarily mean they’re going to develop it — Silicon Valley giants have a habit of patenting almost anything they can think of. On the other hand, previous leaks suggest Facebook has already developed and deployed shadowbanning technology anyway.
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Allum Bokhari is the senior technology correspondent at Breitbart News.