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Posts Tagged ‘Elon Musk’

How Twitter hid US-military info ops from the public – Responsible Statecraft

Posted by M. C. on December 28, 2022

Recent ‘files’ released by the social media giant’s new CEO Elon Musk reveal double standards on outing covert gov’t-backed programs.

https://responsiblestatecraft.org/2022/12/22/how-twitter-hid-us-military-info-ops-from-the-public/

Written by
Eli Clifton

Emails from the so-called “Twitter Files” — internal communications shared with Lee Fang at The Intercept as well as other journalists following Elon Musk’s purchase of the social media platform — reveal that the company had knowledge of a U.S. military-linked information operation and did not publicly acknowledge the operation or provide transparency to the general public after the operation was discovered.

That appears to be a clear violation of Twitter’s principles about state-backed information operations as laid out by Twitter’s former head of trust and safety Yoel Roth in 2019. Indeed, Twitter made a point of disclosing the details of accounts, and the content of their tweets, when they were identified as part of government linked information operations, beginning in 2018.

Roth wrote, in a statement of principles that is still published on Twitter’s website:

We believe Twitter has a responsibility to protect the integrity of the public conversation — including through the timely disclosure of information about attempts to manipulate Twitter to influence elections and other civic conversations by foreign or domestic state-backed entities. We believe the public and research community are better informed by transparency.

Fang, in his article published on Tuesday, details how Twitter “whitelisted” — a function that provided accounts with invulnerability to Twitter’s detection mechanisms that might decrease visibility for accounts engaged in spam or abuse — a list of accounts provided by U.S. Central Command in 2017. The accounts engaged in activities including: touting the accuracy of drone strikes in Yemen, promoting U.S. backed militias in Syria, and spreading anti-Iran messages in Iraq.

An official working at CENTCOM promised that the accounts would be labeled as “USG-attributed, Arabic-language accounts tweeting on relevant security issues,” but many of the accounts subsequently deleted these disclosures and concealed their affiliation with the U.S. government after Twitter granted them the special status.

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Musk Releases ‘Hunter Biden’ Files: Tweets Deleted At Behest Of Team Biden, Exec Was Key Behind Censorship Decision

Posted by M. C. on December 3, 2022

“Twitter took extraordinary steps to suppress the story, removing links and posting warnings that it may be ‘unsafe,’” Taibbi continued. “They even blocked its transmission via direct message, a tool hitherto reserved for extreme cases, e.g. child pornography.”

By  Ryan Saavedra

https://www.dailywire.com/news/musk-releases-hunter-biden-files-tweets-deleted-at-behest-of-team-biden-exec-was-key-behind-censorship-decision

Elon Musk Hunter Biden
Getty Images: ROBERTO SCHMIDT | Taylor Hill

Twitter CEO Elon Musk released information through journalist Matt Taibbi Friday afternoon showing that Twitter was working in conjunction with then-Democrat presidential candidate Joe Biden’s team, removing tweets that team Biden wanted deleted.

Musk said that he decided to release the information because it was “necessary to restore public trust” in the platform after it censored the New York Post’s bombshell report about Hunter Biden’s laptop just weeks before the 2020 presidential election.

Musk quote retweeted Taibbi’s multi-tweet thread on Twitter, writing: “Here we go!!”

Taibbi began by explaining that the company was “slowly forced to add … tools for controlling speech [that] were designed to combat the likes of spam and financial fraudsters.”

“Slowly, over time, Twitter staff and executives began to find more and more uses for these tools. Outsiders began petitioning the company to manipulate speech as well: first a little, then more often, then constantly,” Taibbi said. “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.’”

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Elon Musk To Build “Alternative Phone” If Apple And Google Boot Twitter From App Stores

Posted by M. C. on November 28, 2022

How hard could it be for the world’s richest person to have a team of Tesla engineers build a smartphone? They already mount cellular-connected giant iPad-like screens in all Tesla vehicles on the dashboard of vehicles. 

Yah but…would Elon have to create his own Play Store in the process? One can dream, can’t one?

Tyler Durden's Photo

BY TYLER DURDEN

https://www.zerohedge.com/technology/elon-musk-build-alternative-phone-if-apple-and-google-boot-twitter-app-stores

There’s been speculation over app stores potentially de-platforming Twitter following new owner Elon Musk’s commitment to free speech. Musk unveiled a simple plan Friday night if Apple or Google decides to boot the social media platform from their stores: build a smartphone. And how hard could that be? 

Musk responded to conservative commentator Liz Wheeler, who tweeted: “If Apple & Google boot Twitter from their app stores, @elonmusk should produce his own smartphone. Half the country would happily ditch the biased, snooping iPhone & Android. The man builds rockets to Mars, a silly little smartphone should be easy, right?” 

“I certainly hope it does not come to that,” Musk told Wheeler, “but, yes, if there is no other choice, I will make an alternative phone.”

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The Media’s Deranged Hysteria Over Elon Musk’s Restoration of Free Speech

Posted by M. C. on November 28, 2022

“We are working hard to prepare our new live, nightly prime-time program — SYSTEM UPDATE — which will debut shortly on Rumble. Once launched, it will air every night for one hour, Monday through Friday, at 7 pm ET and will be freely available to everyone. Once the show is concluded, we will move to Locals for an interactive after-show — for our Locals subscribers only — where we will take questions, address ideas, and hear audience feedback.

“For now we are perfecting the show in anticipation of our launch by streaming our live test-run shows on Locals. Last night (Friday night), we focused our monologue on the media’s truly panic-driven and demented meltdown over the possibility that there will be one social media platform on the internet — Twitter — that they cannot censor and control. The monologue examines the underlying motives and drives that cause corporate media employees to panic in the face of free speech, as well as the insidious and potent plan that is being constructed — right out in the open — to destroy any social media platform that refuses to submit to censor orders, the way they did to Parler.

“We believe there is no more urgent issue than the full-scale, multi-pronged attack on free speech on the internet. The censorship regime they are constructing will enable them to propagandize the population without challenge and fully control the flow of information. That is why we are devoting our work and producing our show exclusively on Rumble, a company that we truly believe is committed to preserving free speech and defying censorship pressures not only as a brand but as a cause. Stay tuned for the premiere of our new live SYSTEM UPDATE program here on Rumble. We hope you enjoy this glimpse of the show we are in the final stages of perfecting.

https://rumble.com/v1xbl8g-the-medias-deranged-hysteria-over-elon-musks-restoration-of-free-speech.html

Glenn Greenwald 

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Fired Twitter Employee Applies For First Real Job

Posted by M. C. on November 25, 2022

Mandy Zanderton was laid off by Elon Musk, because he is an evil billionaire. Now, she’s applying for actual work. It didn’t go well. But don’t take our word for it – bah dum DUM!

https://babylonbee.com/video/fired-twitter-employee-applies-for-first-real-job

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Elon Musk Announces Blanket Amnesty For Suspended Users

Posted by M. C. on November 25, 2022

Do you still really care about Twitter?

By  John Rigolizzo

https://www.dailywire.com/news/elon-musk-announces-blanket-amnesty-for-suspended-users

CARINA JOHANSEN/NTB/AFP via Getty Images

Twitter CEO Elon Musk announced a blanket amnesty for Twitter users permanently suspended from the platform.

Musk made the decision Thursday in response to the final results of a poll he tweeted Wednesday. The platform will begin unbanning accounts en masse, except for those who broke the law or engaged in excessive spam, next week, he tweeted in response to the results. Musk has already unbanned a number of popular accounts that were permanently suspended before he took over as “Chief Twit.”

On Wednesday, Musk tweeted a poll asking whether or not to unban users that had been permanently suspended. “Should Twitter offer a general amnesty to suspended accounts, provided that they have not broken the law or engaged in egregious spam?” he wrote.

More than three million users voted in the poll, and the vote was overwhelmingly in favor of amnesty; nearly three-quarters of voters, 72.4%, voted “yes,” while just 27.6% voted “no.”

“The people have spoken,” Musk wrote after the poll concluded. “Amnesty begins next week. Vox Populi, Vox Dei.”

Before the poll ended, Musk seemed to indicate that in effect, the platform would significantly curtail content moderation to target illegal content and increase transparency.

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Dailywire Article

Posted by M. C. on November 23, 2022

Elon Musk And Dinesh D’Souza Explain Why Leftists Aren’t Being Let Back On Twitter

By  Virginia Kruta

Elon Musk And Dinesh D’Souza Explain Why Leftists Aren’t Being Let Back On Twitter

https://www.dailywire.com/news/elon-musk-and-dinesh-dsouza-explain-why-leftists-arent-being-let-back-on-twitter

…“We don’t hear much about Democrats and leftists being let back on Twitter. Why? Because they were never kicked off in the first place. Their lies and misinformation simply escaped all scrutiny. Censorship has been deployed as a one-way operation against conservatives,” D’Souza tweeted, tagging Musk in his post…

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Musk’s Free Speech Moves On Twitter Have So Far Been Unimpressive

Posted by M. C. on November 21, 2022

Caitlin Johnstone

https://caitlinjohnstone.substack.com/p/musks-free-speech-moves-on-twitter?utm_source=substack&utm_medium=email

When Elon Musk’s purchase of Twitter was first announced this past April I said that the purchase likely wouldn’t go through if the empire thought it posed a threat to its information interests. I said that any reduction of censorship protocols which Musk implements on the platform would probably not be of the sort that make any difference to the powerful, but would instead just amplify vapid partisan culture war nonsense.

So far since Musk’s takeover, this does appear to be the case.

In recent days Twitter has reinstated the accounts of Donald Trump, Kanye West, Jordan Peterson, Project Veritas, Kathy Griffin, and the Babylon Bee. This to date is as close as Musk has come to honoring his stated intention of making Twitter a haven of free speech where people have a “digital town square” to debate and discuss ideas.

And it’s not enough. Un-banning a few famous people will drum up a lot of headlines and online chatter and make it look like you’re really doing something, but in the end all you’ve done is reinstate a handful of Twitter accounts. You haven’t done anything to meaningfully scale back the speech restrictions on your platform.

ye @kanyewest

Testing Testing Seeing if my Twitter is unblocked5:43 PM ∙ Nov 20, 20221,017,451Likes85,644Retweets

I can already hear the Elon simps falling all over themselves in a mad rush to tell me it’s only been a few weeks and I need to give Daddy more time, but they can go lick a Tesla battery. Nobody gains anything by giving the billionaire the benefit of the doubt and refraining from pointing out that he hasn’t done nearly enough at this point. The time to start criticizing and pushing is right now.

Twitter is currently full of discussions about which famous people Musk should un-ban next, but they’re completely missing the point. Reinstating a handful of celebrities has no meaningful effect on the free expression of normal people.

I don’t care that I can see tweets from Trump and Kanye again; I care that people are still banned from the platform for questioning western allegations of Russian war crimes and voicing unauthorized opinions about the war in Ukraine. I care that people are still banned for questioning vaccines and Covid policies which affect everyone. I care that media from governments the US doesn’t like are censored and suppressed while its reporters are made to carry “state-affiliated media” labels that media personnel from US-aligned states don’t have. I care that mass purges of accounts are virtually always directed at people from US-targeted nations.

Free speech is important first and foremost not because it feels nice to be able to say whatever you want, but because being able to freely criticize the powerful puts an important check on power. Letting celebrities say whatever they want about trans people or what have you is of the “feels nice to say whatever I want” variety. We’re not seeing any increase in the freedoms of speech which put a check on power.

In fact, we’re seeing Musk pledge to use shadowbanning to algorithmically censor tweets with unauthorized speech.

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Did Twitter’s New Owner Elon Musk Just Prevent World War III? 

Posted by M. C. on November 17, 2022

Did Twitter’s New Owner Elon Musk Just Prevent World War III? 

https://www.dailywire.com/news/did-twitters-new-owner-elon-musk-just-prevent-world-war-iii

By  Candace Owens

DailyWire.com

All right, guys, question of the day today: Did Elon Musk just prevent World War III?

Yeah, he did. I’m going to explain to you how, but first I want to talk to you guys about Western propaganda.

This topic is something that fascinates me. Most people think propaganda doesn’t happen in Western countries. It should be so obvious by now that that is not the case. And that propaganda is a big reason why the Left feared Musk buying Twitter.

For example, on Tuesday, President Donald Trump announced he is running for president in 2024. We all knew it was coming and you could sense that it was coming imminently because the press sort of started this peer pressure campaign to divide the GOP: DeSantis or Trump? Pick a side!

And then in true Western propaganda form, they were in lockstep across the media just insulting him after his announcement.

The media instantly ran with all sorts of wild headlines. Here are just a few:

NPR: Donald Trump, who tried to overturn Biden’s legitimate election, launches 2024 bid

CNBC: Donald Trump, twice impeached and under FBI investigation, launches 2024 White House bid

NBC: Trump, whose lies about the 2020 election inspired an insurrection, announces third White House bid

OK, we get the narrative. You all think he’s an evil monster who won’t go away.

The media really seem to be saying they’re all making the same argument ‘because we are trying to uphold the truth — not because we all seem to be operating in lockstep.’

This brings me to the next person who I want to talk about who is engaged in propaganda and who the media loves to celebrate with the exact same tone: President Volodymyr Zelensky.

As I have said since the beginning of the war, he is a dirtbag. I can’t make myself any clearer on that.

Just when the media abandoned the COVID narrative and said ‘you all forget about the sloppy Afghanistan withdrawal,’ they told you that suddenly you needed to trade in your BLM flags for Ukrainian flags.

Zelensky became a hero overnight in the media. The media basically said, ‘You either get on team Zelensky, or we are going to smear you as a pro-Putin puppet.’

I didn’t take that bait because I don’t care what the legacy media thinks of me.

Why would I care?

He’s a fraud. He’s getting magazine spreads and Oscars from Sean Penn and meeting with celebrities while demanding more money and aid from the United States.

And now, in case you missed it, yesterday he recklessly claimed that Russian missiles hit Poland, killing two. He called on NATO to directly hop into the war and defend Poland — despite no proof Russia did it. In essence, it would have started World War III.

When I saw it, I said clearly this is a lie. The narrative defied common sense. Why would Russia attack NATO? They are losing the war. Unless you’re completely insane, it would make no sense for Russian President Vladimir Putin to attack the West — among other reasons.

But then something happened that proved me right.

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READ IT: Elon Musk Sends Blunt Message To 3,700 Fired Twitter Employees

Posted by M. C. on November 5, 2022

Elon: Good luck separating the wheat from the chaff.

https://www.dailywire.com/news/read-it-elon-musk-sends-blunt-message-to-3700-fired-twitter-employees

By  Ben Zeisloft

Elon Musk, the incoming owner of social media platform Twitter, notified thousands of employees whether they would be staying at the company or departing amid efforts to reduce operating costs.

Reports emerged earlier this week indicating that the world’s richest man was preparing to dismiss 3,700 of the 7,500 employees at Twitter. Some managers had been asked to create lists of employees to fire, with the layoffs slated to occur before employees are scheduled to receive stock benefits as part of their compensation.

The first email, included in full below, informed fired employees that they would no longer have access to Twitter systems and can expect information about their severance packages within a week. Although they are no longer expected to work, the employees will still receive compensation and benefits through January.

The second email, included in part below, told remaining employees that Musk has been listening to customers and other stakeholders on suggestions for improving Twitter. The workers were reminded to demonstrate respect for dismissed colleagues and refrain from talking to the media in accordance with company policy. Twitter offices will be closed until Monday.

The dismissal of rank-and-file Twitter employees comes after Musk immediately fired multiple members of the company’s leadership upon taking control of the platform last week, including chief executive Parag Agrawal and legal czar Vijaya Gadde, who pushed for the suspension of former President Donald Trump and suppressed the Hunter Biden laptop story days before the 2020 election.

Musk, who also leads Tesla, SpaceX, and a handful of smaller startups, released a statement last week explaining that his $44 billion acquisition deal was motivated by a desire to foster open dialogue and free expression. “The reason I acquired Twitter is because it is important to the future of civilization to have a common digital town square, where a wide range of beliefs can be debated in a healthy manner, without resorting to violence,” Musk said. “There is currently great danger that social media will splinter into far right wing and far left wing echo chambers that generate more hate and divide our society.”

However, Musk revealed that a number of corporate advertisers have since paused their relationships with Twitter at the request of left-wing activist groups, who claimed that Musk would promote the spread of hateful rhetoric on his platform.

The email to fired employees:

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