First off, they are entirely within their rights to do this. Both are the property of companies and exist solely for the purposes of those companies.
Second, most people are inherently trusting of whatever the read in the newspaper, hear on TV or see on the Internet. Don’t believe me? How many virus infections and scams start out “Security Alert: Click here to protect your PC?”
Third, people are also somewhat lazy and willing to pass along any meme or believe any “news story” that that reinforces their worldview WITHOUT FACT CHECKING IT.
By overtly and openly choosing to censor what you see these companies are stepping out onto a very slippery slope. Who determines what is a “real” for “fake” news site? Many conservatives dismissed WikiLeaks when the information being shared made Bush look bad. Many liberals condemned it as the work of Satan (OK, Putin) when the information made Hitlery look bad. Does that make it a “fake” news site? What about Brietbart, Huffington Post, CNN, FOX, this blog, other blogs? are those real or fake? What is the exact criteria being used?
We already know both organizations lean dramatically to the left and adjust various controls to ensure their worldview is rewarded and alternate worldviews and penalized. How can they use this new rule to make that even more pronounced?
Again, this is their right. They own the platform and the content (read your agreement) but it is still something that concerns me and should concern anyone who relies on those platforms for news and information. The fact that we are so dependent on them for anything other than sharing pictures of the grand-kids is, to me, the biggest area of concern.
What do you think? Is this an issue? Am I crying wolf?