Mere weeks after doxxing the personal information including the email addresses of former Twitter chief Jack Dorsey, Congressman Ro Khanna, and a number of Twitter executives as part of his release of the unredacted "Twitter Files," Elon Musk Thursday suspended the accounts of high-profile journalists, as well as a user publishing publicly available data about the flight paths of his personal jet, ostensibly, because it was doxxing his personal information.
Aside from highlighting the hypocrisy of Twitter's new owner -- a self-proclaimed "free speech absolutist" -- the episode underscores just how capricious the platform's decision-making has become under his ownership.
For example, @elonmusk used a marginal Twitter poll result to rationalize his decision to un-suspend @realDonaldTrump's account, invoking "Vox Populi, Vox Dei" as his justification.
And while he still has not reinstated the accounts of journalists he asserts doxxed his public flight information following a similar poll -- which so far shows a decisive majority voting Twitter do so immediately -- the moves reveal what "free speech" actually means when the richest man in the world privately owns a social-media network: "I bought the platform, so I'm free to decide who speaks on it."
Remember, this is the same #elonmusk who groused that advertisers exercising their free commercial speech by pausing ad buys on Twitter were somehow also threatening Musk's version of "free speech."
Speaking of commercial free speech, Musk also suspended @joinmastodon, the microblogging platform that ex-Twitter users are flocking to.
First, doxxing presents a real danger and plenty of people have died from the practice. So this isn't doing important work from journalists as some claim.
Secondly, MediaPost continues to conveniently ignore the recent release of Twitter documents that prove individuals were shadowbanned or removed from the platform due to politically motivated Twitter staff members vs. any actual violations - including Trump. You may or may not like what Trump says, but he actually did not violate any of Twitter's rules. So major news stories and people who reported on them were removed or shadowbanned over idealogy - not facts and not actual violations of Twitter rules.
So to pretend that there was free speech under Dorsey and Musk is somehow being hypocritical is another misrepresentation of the facts. Musk has been transparent and involving Twitter users in the discussion on why/how they are making decisions and it's an evolving process.
New users to the platform has increased over the past two months, but let's not let the facts get in the way.
@Dan Ciccione conveniently ignores that MediaPost has not ignored the recent release of Twitter documents (ironically including this column he is commenting on (see below).
That doesn't mean I as a columnist have to agree with your assessment of them, including what they purportedly reveal.
I believe it banned @realDonaldTrump because it was used to incite a violent insurrection. At least that's what Twitter said:
What's Up Doxx?
Red, White & Blog, Joe Mandese - Friday, December 16, 2022
Remember, this is the same @elonmusk who said advertisers exercising their free commercial speech by pausing Twitter ad buys were somehow also threatening his version of "free speech." ...
Tags: ad buys, advertising, cause-related, digital, journalism, social media, twitter
Projection: Twitter Users To Sink To 50M+, With Flat Revenue, By 2024
Digital News Daily, Karlene Lukovitz - Wednesday, December 14, 2022
Insider Intelligence predicts a drop of more than 200 million users due to removal of content safeguards, and that revenue will suffer from lack of innovation, as well as advertis ...
Tags: active users, advertising, twitter
The Twitter Files: Part 3
Red, White & Blog, Joe Mandese - Friday, December 9, 2022
Even as Elon Musk selectively doles internal company files out to anti-MSM journalists, Wikipedia has been setting the record straight in real-time, proving citizen journalism actually does work -- ju ...
Tags: journalism, media, news, politics, social media
@Joe - I know you and I are usually at odds in this ongoing Twitter discussion, but you are citing projections vs. actual numbers.
These aren't my assessments - these are facts that even Twitter has admitted to and the released documents support. Why you use a phrase like "purportedly reveal" illustrates your bias unless you are taking the position that the released documents are somehow doctored and falsified?
And yes, it is your opinion that Trump incited an insurrection on Twitter, but Twitter has admitted that his actual Twitter posts did not violate their rules or insight violence. This seems to be a case where the speech Trump gave on January 6 is being conflated with his Twitter posts. I'm not in support of Trump's actions (or inactions), I am merely looking at what he said and where/how it was delivered.
I am disputing facts presentd here - not your right to have an opinion on how things are unfolding with Twitter.
And I stand by my statement - doxxing is a very serious matter and many people in the U.S. have died due to the practice. It should not be taken lightly and was a major problem in the gaming community for awhile. I'm unclear how you can find Trump's tweets as promoting violence but those doxxing Musk (or anyone else) as not being blatant violations and not promoting violence - that is the very definition of doxxing.