The claims are frightening.
Republics are being shadow banned from Twitter.
President Trump is tweeting that this is discriminatory, and illegal.
Queue the Internet outrage.
So what exactly is shadow banning?
It sounds like nonsense from a science fiction show.
Guys, Steve's been shadow banned by a [UNKNOWN] and they're upside down.
[UNKNOWN] for anyone who is not in mix with angry side of social media.
This whole concept must some bizarre, but is a real thing called Shadow Banding.
And unlike would Trump is claiming it is not happening to republicans on twitter.
Let's break it down.
Shadow banning has been around for a long time on the internet.
It goes way back before Twitter or Facebook.
We're talking the ye olde web forum days.
Let's say you were in an online discussion and a bad user got in the mix Maybe throwing around spammy links, or violating the rules, and just being an unwanted troll.
An admin could make it so no one else will see that user's future posts.
It's like turning the user into a ghost, but they don't know they're dead.
And maybe they'll get the point that they're unwanted when everyone stops interacting with them, or they'll just get bored and bother someone Someone else.
So why not just tell the user they are kicked off?
Because maybe they'll get mad and make another account to continue the bad behavior.
Shadowbanning stuck around as the Internet grew up.
It was Reddit's only form of banning for years until 2015.
Facebook has its own twist on the concept.
If a page is sharing hoaxes and misinformation, The network said, it would rather demote the post so fewer people will see them but it won't thoroughly ban the page.
So, what is happening over at Twitter?
Now, this all got messy when a Vice news post claimed a few Republican Twitter accounts wer shadowban but it wasn't true.
You could always see the user's posts, the tweets were not banned, nothing was hidden.
The thing that got folks upset had to do with Twitter's search function.
If you went to type in these accounts in the search bar, their names were not being suggested in an autocomplete.
An example would be if you type in Donald, it's gonna auto suggest Donald Trump or other popular Donald Wait, someone's name wasn't showing up in a search suggestion bar automatically, it must be conspiracy to silence right wing voices.
Sorry, it's much less sensational.
Twitter says it was a bug.
Back in May Twitter change its search so that it wouldn't give high recommendations to accounts with signs of negative behavior.
So if an account is getting muted, blocked and reported often Well the system may have flagged it as a problematic account.
Twitter's head of product said these behavior signals were causing those names to not appear in search, and it is being fixed.
Twitter said it had nothing to do with political views, or the substance of the tweets.
Now when it comes to if shadow-banning is illegal, well, I have some inside information on that.
Are you ready?
Okay, listen up, social networks can ban whoever they want, so be good on the internet kids.