Federalist Senior Editor Chris Bedford warned Sunday that Google’s recent attempt to censor the conservative website exposes a larger problem facing the free exchange of ideas in the online public square. Powerful tech giants in Silicon Valley, Bedford said, now have the ability to control public speech with corporate censorship, whose executives lean left.
“Google though has a huge amount of power that the United States has allowed for them, basically with monopolistic power in the United States and in a large part of the planet, we’ve allowed that for the free exchange of ideas because we’re a healthy democracy,” Bedford said on Fox News. “But if the monopolists decide that those ideas are not allowed and they are in decent, they’ll take them down. That’s a threat to free speech, and to the republic.”
Bedford added that while The Federalist was large and influential enough to withstand Google’s threats of censorship, the search engine’s power could go unchecked to sink smaller competitors.
“Google has undermined the independent advertising market for years by underbidding firms, which is why you no longer get clean, crisp ads. When you go to most sites you get a barrage of what you’ve been surfing, but Google because of that has been able to push a lot of money through for a lot of companies, and a lot of publishers have become rather reliant on it,” Bedford explained. “While The Federalist would survive without it, it would have been a very serious hit. A lot of sites would not, and it’s an absolute threat to the existence of media companies.”