'1984' in 2014? Fed Gov't Funds 'Truthy' Database to Monitor Hate Speech, Suspicious Memes
The federal government is spending close to $1 million of your money on an online tracking program that will supposedly search for so-called “hate speech” or “misinformation” on Twitter.
On Fox and Friends, Fox News legal analyst Peter Johnson Jr. brought us more details on the “Truthy” database, which intends to monitor suspicious Internet memes as well as false or misleading ideas spreading around social media.
Kind of like this?
Johnson Jr. laid out the plans for the project according to the grant abstract from the National Science Foundation, which will finance the research by Indiana University
The word "truthy" calls to mind Stephen Colbert, so one might at first think this is a harmless experiment, Johnson noted.
But they've actually come up with a whole algorithm to show how they plan to locate so-called hateful, subversive and misleading "propaganda."
The Indiana professor who is leading the project, Filippo Menczer, had previously identified a list of hashtags that he believed fell under the categories of "far right" and "polarizing."
Among those that he listed were #foxnews, #constitution and #israel.
Sounds a little Orwellian, no? Johnson Jr. noted that this effort reminds him of Joe McCarthy's hunt for Communists.
But the university says the "Truthy" project "is not informed by political partisanship" and its algorithms don't take politics into account. In a new blog post, Menczer maintained that the database is not meant to suppress free speech and does not track "hate speech."
Johnson countered that Menczer's explanation of "Truthy" does not line up with the information that was given to the federal government.
Meantime, the Washington Free Beacon points out that Menczer, on his personal website, proclaims his support for numerous progressive groups, including President Obama’s Organizing for Action, Moveon.org, Greenpeace, the Sierra Club, Amnesty International, and True Majority.
Watch Johnson's report above.