U.S. representative Ann Wagner noted at a recent hearing that child pornographic material has been reported on Facebook more than any other site. Lyn Ulbricht, mother of currently imprisoned Silk Road founder Ross Ulbricht, spoke out in a video livestream Wednesday against her son’s unfair sentencing and the hypocrisy of allowing sites like Zuckerberg’s to exist; as Ross is serving more than a double life sentence in prison for operating the basically peaceful Silk Road.
Preferential Treatment for Big Tech, Prison for Free and Voluntary Trade
A tool can be used for ethical or unethical purposes. This common sense understanding is likely why tech giants like Facebook are allowed to continue operating even though they unwittingly facilitate the transmission of extremely abusive and illegal content. In his recent hearing before the U.S. House Committee on Financial Services, Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg was grilled relentlessly about such issues. Republican Representative Ann Wagner referenced a highly disturbing statistic, asserting that the majority of child sexual abuse related content reported to authorities was located on Facebook. The representative noted:
I believe what is illegal offline should be illegal online … 16.8 million, as confirmed by the Department of Justice, of the 18.4 million worldwide reports of child sexual abuse material are on Facebook … these are absolutely shocking numbers.
In her most recent video interview with Youtube channel Crowdsource the Truth, Lyn Ulbricht addresses this, saying “We’ve always said that making a website host liable for criminal activity on the site opens a huge slippery slope. It’s vicarious liability…and actually in a civil case this wouldn’t be allowed.” She goes on to note that Ross is the first person she knows of to be sentenced for such liability in a criminal case,