Editor’s note: Part 1 of this series looks at the media platform Substack, a prime site for uncensored speech.
The New York Times appears to be obsessed with Substack. Perhaps this is because the new media platform is sucking up Times’ authors like a thirsty pioneer crossing the dusty plains in the hit series 1883. Or maybe it is because the Gray Lady and its pals who are in the tank for the left are feeling their power and influence being threatened. If they aren’t sensing a certain amount of vulnerability, they should be.
A consumer-directed digital website, Substack is rapidly becoming a prime mover for uncensored speech on the internet. “We don’t aspire to be the arbiter of saying, ‘Eat your vegetables,’” founder Chris Best quipped to The Times. “If we agree with or like everything on Substack, that would be falling short of what a healthy intellectual climate looks like.”
While politicians are busy arguing over Section 230 and holding hearings on the Hill that haven’t amounted to a stack of old newspapers piled up next to the birdcage, the free market may be solving the censorship problems caused by Big Tech platforms that have reached the point of absurdity.
Indeed, the rapid growth of censorship in recent years may have successfully stamped out free speech, but the left has not found a way to suppress the free market. So the wailing has begun — because if there’s one thing so-called progressives cannot abide, it is a loss of control. It is as if they see the tidal wave coming and can’t find a way to stop it.
Substack, The Times writes, is “transforming journalism,” which constitutes a “power shift” that is a “major headache for big institutions” — like The New York Times. News and information websites such as LibertyNation.com are apt to offer up “two tears in a bucket” to such whining. And why? Because the trampling of free speech has been so egregious — the rubber band has been stretched so far — that it simply had to snap at some point.
Five years ago, LibertyNation.com transformed an idea to inform and educate Americans about current events through the prism of the U.S. Constitution into reality. The very name of our organization – Liberty Nation – was chosen because we believe in such lofty ideals. But we never could have imagined the time and energy we would have to spend defending our right to free speech.
Our website has suffered strikes, bans, and suspensions. We’ve been punished for publishing articles about COVID-19, the 2020 election, the now-defunct Russia collusion scandal, and the Hunter Biden laptop. Those were just the overt actions. But our social media posts also have been “throttled back” and “shadow banned.”
As editor-in-chief, my job became almost untenable, trying to decipher the nebulous litany of “community standards” we were violating. It wasn’t merely words but entire subjects that became verboten. Recently Facebook “fact-checked” one of our memes that it considered “unsafe.”
Is it any surprise that we have joined forces with the likes of Substack? We’re tired of self-censoring just so we can reach our audience that has taken blood, sweat, and tears to build. So we are asking those in the public square who value their God-given right to say what they believe and support free and independent speech to join Liberty Nation on Substack.