Elon Musk suggested that Twitter was acting under government orders to suppress free speech, with his remarks coming hot on the heels of the release of a trove of documents that lift the lid on some of the social media platform’s censorship machinations around the 2020 presidential election.
“Twitter acting by itself to suppress free speech is not a 1st amendment violation, but acting under orders from the government to suppress free speech, with no judicial review, is,” Musk said in a tweet late Friday.
Musk’s remarks came in the context of Friday’s unveiling of a series of internal Twitter communications that give insight into steps taken by staff at the social media platform around suppressing the New York Post’s explosive Hunter Biden laptop story.
‘Free Speech Suppression’
After earlier teasing the imminent disclosure of Twitter’s internal files on the company’s “free speech suppression,” Musk on Friday shared a thread from independent journalist Matt Taibbi, who detailed a series of internal Twitter communications that give insight into various actions taken by staff at the social media platform, including around suppressing the Hunter Biden laptop story.
The Epoch Times has not been able to independently verify the content of the disclosures published by Taibbi and shared by Musk.
In one of his posts, Taibbi shared a screengrab of an internal Twitter email dated Oct. 24, 2020, which appears to show a Twitter executive sharing a list of five tweets allegedly identified by people from the campaign of then-candidate Joe Biden, a Democrat.
Taibbi wrote in a comment: “By 2020, requests from connected actors to delete tweets were routine. One executive would write to another: ‘More to review from the Biden team.’ The reply would come back: ‘Handled.’”
8. By 2020, requests from connected actors to delete tweets were routine. One executive would write to another: “More to review from the Biden team.” The reply would come back: “Handled.” pic.twitter.com/mnv0YZI4af— Matt Taibbi (@mtaibbi) December 2, 2022
Musk replied to Taibbi’s tweet with the word “Handled” followed by three “fire” emojis. He later responded to his own post with the statement: “If this isn’t a violation of the Constitution’s First Amendment, what is?”
By Tom Ozimek