Twitter admits that it “downranks”

Twitter admits it can “downrank accounts”, which is a modified from of shadow banning.

Source: Twitter Responds to Project Veritas’s Video Claiming It Shadow Bans

As I have noted, a shadow ban can mean only the poster sees their tweets, or only their current followers see their tweets – but their tweets may be displayed less frequently to their followers, or not at all to non followers – thereby making the tweets disappear from search results. That this goes on is apparent due to other oddities, like messages from Twitter saying a Tweet is unavailable, but when you click through, you can see the tweet that is “not available”.

A problem with secret censorship is the censor is eventually discovered.

As of 1 pm, PST, a search of Google News shows that not a single mainstream news outlet has reported on current or former Twitter employees admitting on camera to shadow banning tweets and users whose political messages they disagree with.

Update: Twitter is not denying that it engages in various forms of censorship. Twitter does say that it has privacy and other policies in effect. While denying it does shadow bans, it does acknowledge down ranking, which is a variation of shadow banning.

How Twitter’s shadow banning system works

Here is some insight in to how Twitter’s shadow banning algorithm’s may be operating.

In addition to their “machine learning” (a good but significantly over-hyped technology) scanning of messages, their algorithms take in to account user reports, and the muting or blocking of accounts to decide if individual tweets or accounts should be shadow banned. The user that is shadow banned is not notified of the ban.

Once shadow banned, one’s Tweets may not show up in some follower’s Twitter feeds, may be excluded from search results, and generally made invisible. In the former, a shadow banned tweet (or account) might have Tweets appear only in news feeds of existing followers – thereby seeming to continue to have normal interactions so that you are not aware of the shadow ban. However, as I discovered for a 4 week period when I posted screen snap shots of actual price quotes – I gained zero new followers, although my existing followers continued to interact on the topic. The lack of new followers is a sign that my account likely had a partial shadow ban. I previously gained my largest influx of new followers when I had posted similar Tweets earlier in the year, giving more evidence that my account was partially shadow banned by Twitter because a Twitter employee did not want this public information to be disseminated.

Shadow bans are not necessarily permanent and in fact, may generally be temporary.

Update: Another way that Twitter controls the tweets you see is that Twitter curates your news feed. Twitter selects the content that Twitter believes you want to see and highlights those Tweets at top. Twitter also selects content from other people to display your news feed – content from people you do not follow.

The combination of curation, insertion of random tweets from people you do not follow, down ranking and shadow banning means that Twitter is George Orwell’s 1984, in real life, directly controlling the information you see. Twitter is basically a massive propaganda operation. If Twitter were based in Russia, North Korea or Iran, the U.S. would be loudly proclaiming Twitter as a tool of an evil regime.


Was I “shadow banned” by Twitter? #shadowbanned

For a little over a month last fall, I ramped up my daily use of Twitter. During that time, I posted many screen snapshots of actual price quotes from

For 4 weeks, I did not see a single new follower to my Twitter feed. It was as if my account had vanished. Not one additional follower for 4 weeks.

With the news that Twitter actively censors political or policy speech that Twitter disagrees with, it seems likely that Twitter shadow banned my posts.”Shadow banning” can mean only the poster sees their own posts, but their posts are invisible to all others. Or, in the case of Twitter, it can also mean that Twitter still shows your posts, but at a greatly reduced rate, intentionally omitting posts from other’s Twitter feeds.

With no one – or few – seeing my posts, my account had gone dark. At the end of the 4 week period, my account began to receive new followers once again.

In December I chose to reduce my use of Twitter. My decision was influenced by the idiocy displayed after the crash of an Amtrak train in Washington State. Twitter had become a waste of time.

The main thing Twitter is good for is to find examples of social media propaganda methods!


I was shadow banned by Oregonian censorship, a powerful form of propaganda

Today, the Oregonian ran a story from the AP about the high costs of ACA insurance policies. I added two comments to the story. One of my comments appears online and the other is “shadow banned”.

When I am logged in to the Oregonian, I see this

When I am not logged in, I see only this which is presumably what everyone else sees as well. In other words, my comment is visible only to me but invisible to everyone else.

This was tested on both Windows and Mac OS X and multiple browsers.

The Oregonian shadow banned my comment, for unknown reasons. My comment presents actual price quotes from This is public information and is non-controversial. Did factual information bother someone at the Oregonian?

A shadow ban is when a web site bans your content from being seen by others but allows you see to see your own content tricking you in to thinking your comment is online. A shadow ban hides the act of censorship from the content writer who is unaware they have been shadow banned – because they see their own comment.

This is a grotesque form of censorship by the Oregonian.

Censorship is one of the strongest forms of propaganda messaging.

Two can play that game as well – we will no longer be reading The Oregonian as their content can not be trusted when they engage in secret censorship of factual information. Facts and logic are powerful antidotes to propagandists – but only if they can cut through the media censors.

I am trying to get an answer from the Oregonian as to what is going on and will update this if they tell me.

Facebook launches Thought Police censorship program

Facebook has taken the step of allowing people to share the post only if they also condemn its content, which is not unprecedented but unusual, according to The Verge. Posts that include the link will automatically be removed from Facebook, unless it also includes a caption that condemns either the article or The Daily Stormer, The Verge reported.

Source: Facebook is actively deleting shares of ‘The Daily Stormer’ article on Heather Heyer

Obviously, the post and the racist group behind it are extraordinarily evil in their goals and action. But when 1/3 of the entire population of the earth has a Facebook account and most log in daily, Facebook has the most extraordinary power of propaganda messaging in world history. What else will Facebook choose to censor? (Quite a bit, actually, as they already censor on behalf of some governments.)

The Occupy Propaganda blog was itself previously censored by Facebook’s algorithms, and is the reason this blog is no longer hosted on my own web server but moved to Facebook secretly “shadow banned” this blog’s auto posts to the Facebook group page, last winter. You can read about our experience with that, here.

At some point, people and governments that believe the freedom of expression is essential (and sometimes painful) to a democracy may believe they should step in and regulate Facebook’s extraordinary power to control world thought. But that could never happen: Facebook’s propaganda capabilities are so powerful that Facebook could readily turn the public against such an idea, or more likely, seemingly support such regulation but in a way (like most regulations) use the regulatory process to stymie competitors.