A seemingly ordinary two-bedroom apartment available to rent at 142 West 109th Street actually has a special past: President Obama lived there in 1981 during his junior year at Columbia University. “It’s a dinner conversation,” an agent from Citi Habitats tells the Times. Not only that it’s history. Can you really put a price on cooking pasta in the same kitchen nook where Obama cooked, squeezing past your roommate in the same narrow hallway where Obama squeezed, or staring at the alleyway across the street where Obama slept his first night in the city when he couldn’t get into the apartment, or for that matter, the hydrant where he supposedly washed up the next morning with a homeless man? Actually, yes, you can. The price is $1,900. And it would be exactly the same whether the president used to live there or not, a Citi Habitats rep tells us.
[Facebook’s rationale for leaving up the Pelosi video] is ridiculous. The only thing the incident shows is how expert Facebook has become at blurring the lines between simple mistakes and deliberate deception, thereby abrogating its responsibility as the key distributor of news on the planet.
Would a broadcast network air this? Never. Would a newspaper publish it? Not without serious repercussions. Would a marketing campaign like this ever pass muster? False advertising.
No other media could get away with spreading anything like this because they lack the immunity protection that Facebook and other tech companies enjoy under Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act. Section 230 was intended to spur innovation and encourage start-ups. Now it’s a shield to protect behemoths from any sensible rules. …
By conflating censorship with the responsible maintenance of its platforms, and by providing “rules” that are really just capricious decisions by a small coterie of the rich and powerful, Facebook and others have created a free-for-all with no consistent philosophy.