Brian Stelter Says ‘Harm Reduction Model’ Is Not The Same As Censorship

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CNN host Brian Stelter argued that a “harm reduction model” used by tech companies to limit reach is not the same as censorship during a Sunday morning “Reliable Sources” monologue.

“Dishonest cries of censorship are filling Fox’s airwaves with charges that these guys right here are being suppressed,” Stelter said before pointing specifically to Republican Missouri Sen. Josh Hawley’s complaints about being dropped by Simon & Schuster after the Jan. 6 riot at the U.S. Capitol.


“It’s predictable as the sunrise,” he continued. “Democrats win elections and Republicans say they are being silenced. But while some cry cancel culture, let me suggest a different way to think about this, a harm reduction model. Most people want clean air and blue skies and accurate news and rational views. And then in that healthy environment, that looks beautiful, then we can have great fights about taxes and regulation and health care and all the rest. The vast majority of people can agree that disinformation about, let’s say the pandemic, is unhealthy. It’s harmful. So how can that harm be reduced?”

Stelter pointed to platforms removing “lies” about vaccines, the Nov. 2020 election, and QAnon. (RELATED: Former Facebook Official Calls For Verizon, AT&T, Others To Deplatform OANN And Newsmax)

“Do these private companies have too much power? Sure. Many people would say yes, of course they do,” he said. “But reducing a liar’s reach is not the same as censoring freedom of speech. Freedom of speech is different than freedom of reach, and algorithmic reach is part of the problem.”