Minds.com co-founder Bill Ottman and activist Daryl Davis took part in the “Joe Rogan Experience” to unveil their #ChangeMinds de-radicalization initiative.
The team at blockchain-based social network Minds and Davis has published a research paper outlining how “deplatforming is actually intensifying extremism” and explaining how a new approach to online moderation is needed.
Part of the discussion had Davis describing his experiences debating with others on the Minds platform. As Rogan explains how Davis convinced KKK members to change their views on race — as explored in his previous appearance — here, the longtime activist refines his main point.
In explaining how a hypothetically intense discussion unfolds, Davis emphasizes the importance of breaking down the other person’s “walls.” That is, if Davis and a racist who hates black people can listen to each other’s points of view, at all costs, it can have a significant impact on the racist in the long run.
Internet entrepreneur and Minds CEO Bill Ottman builds on the “falling walls” point by adding how neuroscientist Sam Harris has previously studied people’s actual brain waves in regards to how an individual reacts unconsciously being presented with ideas or concepts that they don’t like.
The key to #ChangeMinds, according to Ottman and Davis, is to build long-term relationships between people of opposing viewpoints as the primary goal.
In describing the research paper, Minds staffers said their “article examines the harmful effects of social media censorship and proposes an alternative model of moderation based on free speech and internet freedom” .
An excerpt from the diary’s introduction says:
“Research found significant evidence that censorship and platforming can promote and amplify, rather than suppress, cognitive radicalization and even violent extremism. Shutting down accounts accused of violating hate speech policies and misinformation often moves these banned people to alternative platforms where their narrative of long-suffering victimization is further refined.”
Davis wrote in the foreword to the research paper about how the means of expressing opinions as a member of the general public have evolved significantly since pre-internet times. Davis insists that a new shift in thinking is needed in the age of technological liberation for individualism.
The timing of the unveiling is relevant in the case of the show host Rogan. The world’s leading podcast program has faced a cavalcade of censorship efforts from far-left and corporate media outlets who coveted the Spotify platform and demanded they essentially “tame” the Rogan’s ability to freely discuss controversial topics, or forbid it altogether.
It was a debacle that amounted to Rogan being featured on an episode of “The Simpsons” airing on Sunday and satirizing cancel culture.