During an appearance on the Ruthless podcast, 2024 presidential candidate Nikki Haley debuted a new policy proposal that almost-certainly was never put before a focus group.
According to the New York Post:
Haley proposed forcing social media users to verify their identities before posting, citing “national security” concerns.
The former South Carolina governor’s plan is part of a set of social media reforms aimed at transparency — which she pushed during an appearance on Fox News — that has rankled some of her primary opponents.
“When I get into office, the first thing we have to do, social media accounts, social media companies, they have to show America their algorithms,” Haley said. “Let us see why they’re pushing what they’re pushing. The second thing is, every person on social media should be verified, by their name. That’s, first of all, it’s a national security threat. When you do that, all of a sudden, people have to stand by what they say. And it gets rid of the Russian bots, the Iranian bots and the Chinese bots. And then you’re going to get some civility when people know their name is next to what they say, and they know their pastor and their family members are going to see it.”
The argument that we need to verify every person on social media to prevent bot activity is laughable, as bot activity is relatively easy to detect already. It’s as if Haley has a “solution” and is in search of a problem to justify it. Internet anonymity has long been the only way for many to express unpopular or dissenting opinions without fear of retaliation, especially against their employment or family members. Ironically, internet anonymity offers protection to those speaking out against the very repressive governments Haley listed, such as Russia, China and Iran.