Twitter Backs Down—Slightly!—After Outcry
Oct. 16, 2020 (EIRNS)—Twitter is making minor concessions after the enormous outcry of its censorship of the New York Post story on Hunter Biden. This is a case of three steps forward, one step back, and should not in any way be considered an actual change in the overall trajectory towards increasing censorship and control over what is allowed to be said. There is a glaring contradiction between blocking New York Post reporting on material of unclear provenance, while allowing New York Times discussion of Trump’s taxes (as just one example).
Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey tweeted Oct. 14, Wednesday night:
“Our communication around our actions on the @nypost article was not great. And blocking URL sharing via tweet or DM with zero context as to why we’re blocking: unacceptable.”
Vijaya Gadde, Twitter’s Legal Lead, tweeted late on Thursday that the tech behemoth is modifying its Hacked Materials Policy, which has been selectively employed, to put it mildly:
“Over the last 24 hours, we’ve received significant feedback (from critical to supportive) about how we enforced our Hacked Materials Policy yesterday. After reflecting on this feedback, we have decided to make changes to the policy and how we enforce it.
“Why the changes? We want to address the concerns that there could be many unintended consequences to journalists, whistleblowers and others in ways that are contrary to Twitter’s purpose of serving the public conversation.
“So, what’s changing?
“1. We will no longer remove hacked content unless it is directly shared by hackers or those acting in concert with them
“2. We will label Tweets to provide context instead of blocking links from being shared on Twitter.”
How kind of our benevolent rulers at Twitter to deign to allow its users to share their views with others, met no longer with an absolute ban, but simply with a kind, avuncular correction—the addition of “context.” This change—a very minor reversal—in no way signals the end of the censorship designed to take away from people the ability to discuss and deliberate on our common future.