Topic: Media Research Center
The Media Research Center's insistence on lashing out at anyone who won't blindly adhere to the predetermined narratives promoted by Elon Musk and its fellow right-wingers regarding Twitter even extends to bashing Twitter's founder, Jack Dorsey. Catherine Salgado complained in a Dec. 15 post:
Twitter founder Jack Dorsey released his opinion of the Twitter Files exposing his platform’s biased censorship, admitting his serious failures around free speech, while still claiming a lack of “hidden agendas.”
Dorsey tweeted his take on the Twitter Files Dec. 13, claiming it was based on the “principles I've come to believe” due to his experiences founding and leading Twitter. He began with a list:
“1. Social media must be resilient to corporate and government control.
2. Only the original author may remove content they produce.
3. Moderation is best implemented by algorithmic choice.”
This seemingly anti-censorship list is ironic in light of Twitter Files revelations that Dorsey was part of the top censorship team at Twitter and was at least aware of the reasons for banning former President Donald Trump despite Trump not violating any platform rules. Dorsey did at least admit in a blog post that he had messed up—badly.
Salgao is being highly disingenuous in claiming that Trump never violated any Twitter rules -- a claim that came from a previous "Twitter files" release (which, of course, Salgado hyped). As a more honest media outlet noted, the discussion focused only the final two tweets Trump made before his suspension (he had repeatedly violated Twitter standards before but was given a pass because he was a public figure), and some Twitter officials thought there was a coded call to incitement in those tweets. And that file release omited the fact that Twitter had warned Trump immediate after the Capitol riot that further violations of its rules could result in a permanent ban.
Salgado continued her complaint:
Dorsey then specifically referred to Trump’s ban, saying Twitter “did the right thing for the public company business at the time, but the wrong thing for the internet and society.” But the former CEO did not admit the full scale of Twitter’s bias under his watch. He denied any “ill intent or hidden agendas.” MRC’s CensorTrack has years of records of Twitter’s biased censorship.
People need tools to resist an enforced media or government narrative, Dorsey said. “Allowing a government or a few corporations to own the public conversation is a path towards centralized control.”
But Dorsey did not expound upon Twitter’s secret coordination with the government to censor Americans.
CensorTrack is not a reliable tool because of its existence as a tool to further right-wing "censorship" narratives ahead of being a serious documentation system -- it's a partisan tool, not a research tool. And as we've pointed out, claiming the government engaged in "secret coordination with the government to censor Americans" is a conspiracy theory.
Dorsey wrote that he knew people would distrust his recommendations based on his own record, and added that he wished he had made Twitter “uncomfortably transparent in all their actions.”
He then ended the piece by condemning attacks on former Twitter colleagues and promoting new technologies for social media.
Only time will tell if the anti-free speech trend on social media is reversible.
Of course, the MRC is totally cool with "the anti-free speech trend on social media" when Musk himself is doing the censoring.