Diamond and Silk

Diamond and Silk

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Updated Apr 26, 2018 at 06:00PM EDT by Don.

Added Apr 12, 2018 at 11:55AM EDT by Matt.

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About

Diamond and Silk are the professional names of Lynette Hardaway and Rochelle Richardson, a pair of American vloggers and conservative political commentators. Known for their support of United States President Donald Trump, Diamond and Silk host a YouTube show entitled "The Viewers View" in which they discuss and comment on the news, politics and the media.

Online History

The first video on The Viewers YouTube[1] channel was published on January 2nd, 2015. The video (shown below) entitled "BLACK LIVES MATTER" features various examples of police brutality throughout history. Within three years, the video has received more than 17,000 views.



On July 5th, the channel published its first vlog, featuring Lynette "Diamond" Hardaway explaining her support for then-presidential candidate Donald Trump.[2] The video (shown below, left) received more than 86,000 views in two-and-a-half years.

Three weeks later, on July 23rd the channel published its first video featuring both Diamond and Rochelle "Silk" Richardson.[3] The video "New Details in the Death of Sandra Bland: What we now know…." features the two discussing and debating the death of Sandra Bland, a 28-year-old African American woman who was arrested during a traffic stop and found dead in her jail cell three days later. The video (shown below, right) received more than 32,000 views as of April 2018.



On August 7th, the two published a video entitled "MEGYN KELLY STARTS A WAR WITH DONALD TRUMP AT THE DEBATE." The video features the two discussing Megyn Kelly and Donald Trump's contentious back-and-forth at the 2016 Republican presidential primary. This was the first time one of their videos pass one million views, and within two-and-a-half years, the video has received more than 1.7 million views.[4]



Several months later, Diamond and Silk appeared with Trump on stage. The video (shown below) was published by Fox 10 Phoenix on December 4th, 2015 and has received more than 780,000 views.[5]

The following year, Donald Trump retweeted Diamond and Silk, who shared a meme expressing the opinion that Trump has long been a champion of the African American community. Trump said, "Thank you Diamond and Silk!" The post (shown below, right) received more than 4,300 retweets and 10,000 likes in a year and a half.

As Diamond and Silk continued to support Trump on the campaign trail, they began joining other controversial Trump supporters, such as Milo Yiannopoulos. On July 23rd, 2016, they appeared on Milo's YouTube channel in the video "Milo Talks Trump With Diamond & Silk At RNC." The post (shown below, right) received more than 183,000 views.



Following Donald Trump's victory in the 2016 presidential election, Diamond and Silk continued to bolster their support for the president. On March 24th, 2018, Diamond and Silk tweeted[6] a photograph of the two women with President Trump. They captioned the photograph, Just so you know, we will always have our Presidents back. 'Don't Get It Twisted!' (Official White House Photo by Shealah Craighead)." The post (shown below) received more than 6,000 retweets and 20,000 likes in one month.


de Diamond and Silk® @DiamondandSilk Just so you know, we will always have our Presidents back. "Don't Get It Twisted!" (Official White House Photo by Shealah Craighead)

Reputation

Diamond and Silk are known for their outspoken support of president Trump, as well as for challenging the stereotypical demographics of a Trump supporter, becoming two of the most prominent African American female supporters of Trump.

Criticism

YouTube Demonetization

On August 10th, 2017, Diamond and Silk tweeted[7] that YouTube had demonetized 95% of their videos. They wrote, .@YouTube @TeamYouTube stopped over 95% percent of our videos from being monetized, stating: 'It's Not Suitable For All Advertisers'…….." The post (shown below, left) received more than 2,600 retweets and 4,200 likes in eight months.

Several prominent conservatives supported Diamond and Silk and joined them in accusing YouTube of bias against. Former vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin tweeted,[8] "They are messing with the wrong ladies. We've got your back Diamond And Silk." Within eight months, the tweet (shown below, right) received more than 3,200 retweets and 8,500 likes.


Diamond and Silk® @DiamondandSilk @YouTube @Team YouTube stopped over 95% percent of our videos from being monetized, stating: "It's Not Suitable For All Diamond and Silk® @DiamondandSilk @YouTube @Team YouTube stopped over 95% percent of our videos from being monetized, stating: "It's Not Suitable For All

Facebook Controversy

On April 6th, 2018, Diamond and Silk published a statement on their Facebook [9] page, accusing Facebook of political bias, after the company accused them of having content that is "unsafe for the community." They described the ruling as "deliberate bias censorship and discrimination." The post (shown below) received more than 64,000 shares, 100,000 reactions and 26,000 comments.


Diamond And Silk April 6 at 7:06pm Diamond And Silk have been corresponding since September 7, 2017, with Facebook (owned by Mark Zuckerberg), about their bias censorship and discrimination against D&S brand page. Finally after several emails, chats, phone calls, appeals, beating around the bush, lies, and giving us the run around, Facebook gave us another bogus reason why Millions of people who have liked and/or followed our page no longer receives notification and why our page, post and video reach was reduced by a very large percentage. Here is the reply from Facebook. Thu, Apr 5, 2018 at 3:40 PM: "The Policy team has came to the conclusion that your content and your brand has been determined unsafe to the community." Yep, this was FB conclusion after 6 Months, 29 days, 5 hrs, 40 minutes and 43 seconds. Oh and guess what else Facebook said: "This decision is final and it is not appeal-able in any way." (Note: This is the exact wording that FB emailed to us.) So our questions to Facebook (Mark Zuckerberg) are: 1. What is unsafe about two Blk-women supporting the President Donald J. Trump? 2. Our FB page has been created since December 2014, when exactly did the content and the brand become unsafe to the community? 3. When you say "community" are you referring to the Millions who liked and followed our page? 4. What content on our page was in violation? 5. If our content and brand was so unsafe to the community, why is the option for us to boost our content and spend money with FB to enhance our brand page still available? Maybe FB should give us a refund since FB censored our reach. 6. Lastly, didn't FB violate their own policy when FB stopped sending notifications to the Millions of people who liked and followed our brand page This is deliberate bias censorship and discrimination. These tactics are unacceptable and we want answers! Diamond and Silk

Two days later, Diamond and Silk appeared on Fox and Friends to discuss their stance against Facebook. The Fox News tweeted[10] a quote from the interivew, which read, ".@DiamondandSilk: "If a privately owned bakery has to go against their Christian values to bake a cake, then Mark Zuckerberg is going to have to suck it up buttercup and allow Diamond and Silk to speak our truth." The post (shown below, left) received more than 6,800 retweets and 17,000 likes in four days.

The issue continued to grow over the following days. On April 11th, lawmakers questioned Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg on the issue during his testimony before the House of Representatives. That day, CNN's Oliver Darcy tweeted[11] a picture of a lawmaker holding up a picture of Diamond and Silk and the caption "When you turn on the House hearings and see a lawmaker have a giant pic of Diamond & Silk brought out to be shown to Mark Zuckerberg." The post (shown below, center) received more than 230 retweets and 630 likes in 24 hours.

That evening, comedian and television star Rosanne Barr tweeted,[13] "Diamond and Silk are comedians-stop censoring them!" The post (shown below, right) received more than 8,00 retweets and 31,000 likes in 24 hours.


FOX NEWS Fox News @FoxNews channel .@DiamondandSilk: "If a privately owned bakery has to go against their Christian values to bake a cake, then Mark Zuckerberg is going to have to suck it up buttercup and allow Diamond and Silk to speak our truth." FOX DIAMOND & SILK: FACEBOOK SAYS WE'RE "UNSAFE" channe Oliver Darcy @oliverdarcy When you turn on the House hearings and see a lawmaker have a giant pic of Diamond & Silk brought out to be shown to Mark Zuckerberg LIVE Roseanne Barr Φ @therealroseanne Diamond and Silk are comedians-stop censoring them!

Online, people explained why Diamond and Silk may be considered "unsafe of the community," including reporting on various conspiracy theoriees, such as pizzagate and Uranium One (shown below).[12]



House Judiciary Committee Hearing

On April 26th, 2018, Diamond and Silk testified under oath before the House Judiciary Committee to discuss content filtering on social media. During the hearing, the pair claimed the Facebook censored their "free spech." Additionally, Diamond claimed the duo had "never been paid by the Trump campaign." Later, Democratic representative Hakeem Jeffries questioned Diamond and Silk further on the matter, leading them to acknowledge they had been reimbursed for airfare traveling to a Trump campaign event (shown below).



That day, several posts about the conflicting testimony reached the front page of /r/politics.[14][15][16] Meanwhile, articles about the hearing were published by the news sites Washington Post,[17] CBS News[18] and The Verge.[19]

Search Interest

External References

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