SCARY: New UK Bill Aims To Give Social Media Users A Truth Score

Note: This article may contain commentary or the author's opinion.

An amendment that was proposed to a bill in the United Kingdom would make it mandatory for all users of social media to be granted a ‘truth score’ that pre-determines how accurate their posts are. The amendment, which would censor content that is “legal but harmful,” was pushed to be added to the already abhorrent “Online Safety Bill” by MP John Penrose of the Conservative Party. The bill would censor content that is “legal but damaging”.

The new proposed bill has many citizens of the United Kingdom comparing the new bill to George Orwell’s 1984 novel which depicts a branch of the government called the Ministry of Truth which cracks down on anyone to speak out against “Big Brother”.

Zero Hedge reported:

“Like something out of dystopian fiction, Penrose, the MP for Weston-super-Mare, has proposed that the government forces online platforms to maintain a score of how truthful a person is, determined by their past statements,” writes Dan Frieth.

The amendment states that any users who have “produced user-generated content,” published news or merely posted “comments” or “reviews” should be ranked by the platform in question, with a score given denoting their “historic factual accuracy.” The rules would apply to anyone who receives a certain threshold of online views, with that figure to be determined by the UK communications regulator OFCOM.

The user’s posts would then be “displayed in a way which allows any user easily to reach an informed view of the likely factual accuracy of the content at the same time as they encounter it.”

To put it another way, the new law would give social media platforms that lean to the far left the authority, under the threat of being fined by the government, to assign misinformation scores to the profiles of users who lean to the right, with the possibility that such negative labels would then impact the performance of algorithms.

This would essentially constitute a major expansion of the labels of misinformation and political ‘fact checks’ that are presently applied to individual posts, extending them to people. These labels and checks are already applied to individual postings.

The new UK bill has many comparing the new social media truth score to China’s social credit score.

The People’s Republic of China has begun to assign scores to its residents that will determine their ability to travel, their social mobility, educational prospects, and even where they are allowed to live.

The Chinese government has now fully implemented the credit system and the credit system functions similarly to financial credit scores in the United States; however, rather than dictating an individual’s ability to obtain a line of credit, the Chinese social credit score influences nearly every aspect of an individual’s life by surveillance.

So how does a social credit score work? Well to begin, one’s actions while online are constantly under close examination. Speech made online that “puts down” other people leads to scoring deductions, whereas speech that “tattles” on other citizens might result in score increases. The legislation goes beyond the ordinary offenses committed online by establishing “online credit blacklist systems” for conduct that is regarded as “severe actions of violating trust online.” Being placed on a blacklist can result in restrictions placed on internet use, public humiliation, or even a total ban from using the internet.

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