By Hudson Crozier
What’s new: House Republicans have promised to investigate the U.S. State Department’s funding of the Global Disinformation Index (GDI), a British group “defunding disinformation” by identifying “risky” media outlets for online advertisers to avoid.
Examples of “disinformation”: The GDI labeled an opinion article critical of transgenderism as “anti-LGBTQ+.” It also targets anti-vaccine content, allegations of voter fraud in the 2020 U.S. presidential election, and “disinformation narratives” such as the belief in “a corrupt elite working only for themselves, not serving the will of the common man.”
The blacklist for advertisers: All ten of the news and commentary sites the GDI deems “riskiest” are right-leaning or libertarian, including the New York Post, Reason Magazine, and The Daily Wire. All but one of the “least risky sites” are mainstream, left-leaning outlets such as The New York Times, BuzzFeed News, and HuffPost.
Who’s behind it? Members of the panel in charge of the blacklist are journalists, professors, and data scientists that the GDI claims are politically unbiased. One is an employee at Meta, which has a history of partisan censorship. Another is a journalist who claimed that Hunter Biden’s foreign business deals weren’t “interesting” and don’t implicate President Joe Biden.
The global censorship network: The GDI has received over $650,000 from an agency within the State Department and the National Endowment for Democracy (NED), a nonprofit funded by the department. Following these reports, the NED announced it would end its relationship with the GDI. But several other nonprofits have donated millions to the GDI, including one founded by left-wing megadonor George Soros. The GDI has also collaborated with international entities—including NATO—and the U.S. Cybersecurity Infrastructure and Security Agency, which has propelled social media censorship.