Since it began mandatory polygraph screening more than a decade ago, U.S. Customs and Border Protection, the parent agency of the U.S. Border Patrol, has had one of the highest pre-employment polygraph failure rates in the federal government, with up to two-thirds of applicants who make it as far as the polygraph being disqualified based on this scientifically baseless procedure.
Reddit, described by Wikipedia as “an American social news aggregation, content rating, and discussion website,” includes a community (or “subreddit”) called r/borderpatrolapplicant “for those interested or going through the hiring process to be a Border Patrol Agent….”
Although the subreddit includes a disclaimer stating in all caps:
…THIS PAGE IS NOT ENDORSED BY THE UNITED STATES BORDER PATROL AND DOES NOT REFLECT ANY OFFICIAL GOVERNMENT AGENCY…
the moderators of r/borderpatrolapplicant are all current or former government employees:
The moderators of this subreddit have long censored discussion of polygraphy, which since the subreddit’s creation in 2017 has been one of the most common topics raised by participants. Approximately one year ago, the moderators of r/borderpatrolapplicant permanently banned AntiPolygraph.org’s Reddit account for unstated reasons.
Now, in a post made on or about Saturday, 13 January 2024, the moderators of r/borderpatrolapplicant have banned all discussion of polygraphy. Excerpt:
It’s become pretty obvious that every post about The Polygraph, even a positive experience, inevitably devolves into some sort of debate or argument. Therefore, we are updating the rules of the Subreddit regarding polygraph discussion.
Don’t debate or discuss the polygraph.
Don’t post questions asking for advice about how to pass your polygraph.
Don’t discuss your individual polygraph exams.
The post goes on to discourage readers from researching polygraphy:
Don’t do research. The majority of the information on line is pure nonsense and will only freak you out and cause you to be more stressed out than you have to be. Any information about the polygraph from the internet, a friend who took one, a cop who thinks he knows how it works, is likely to cause you to not do well. Despite some people’s good intentions, they’re not polygraph examiners and only know what they think they know. They are typically not wise enough to keep their mouth shut about things outside their wheel house.
Reddit users who wish to engage in uncensored discussion of polygraph-related topics are welcome to do so in the subreddit r/AntiPolygraph.