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December 12, 2022

Twitter Files Part 4: Banning Trump, Part 1

Part 5 just dropped, but I'm just finishing up with Part 4, which was posted over the weekend.

Michael Shellenberger @ShellenbergerMD

Dorsey was on vacation in French Polynesia the week of January 4-8, 2021. He phoned into meetings but also delegated much of the handling of the situation to senior execs @yoyoel, Twitter's Global Head of Trust and Safety, and
@vijaya Head of Legal, Policy, & Trust.

As context, it's important to understand that Twitter's staff & senior execs were overwhelmingly progressive.

In 2018, 2020, and 2022, 96%, 98%, & 99% of Twitter staff's political donations went to Democrats.

In 2017, Roth tweeted that there were "ACTUAL NAZIS IN THE WHITE HOUSE."

In April 2022, Roth told a colleague that his goal "is to drive change in the world," which is why he decided not to become an academic.

On January 7, @Jack emails employees saying Twitter needs to remain consistent in its policies, including the right of users to return to Twitter after a temporary suspension

After, Roth reassures an employee that "people who care about this... aren't happy with where we are"

"People who care about this" being the pro-censorship anti-conservative leftwing, including those in the media constantly pushing for social media to censor conservatives, like Brian Stelter, Oliver Darcy, and Buzzfeed Andrew of CNN.

Note he doesn't reference other "people who care about this," pro-freedom conservatives who don't want to be censored, because they are literally beneath mention.

"Progress!" exclaims a member of Roth's Trust and Safety Team.

The exchange between Roth and his colleagues makes clear that they had been pushing @jack for greater restrictions on the speech Twitter allows around elections.

Around 11:30 am PT, Roth DMs his colleagues with news that he is excited to share.

"GUESS WHAT," he writes. "Jack just approved repeat offender for civic integrity."

The new approach would create a system where five violations ("strikes") would result in permanent suspension.

The colleague wants to know if the decision means Trump can finally be banned. The person asks, "does the incitement to violence aspect change that calculus?"

Roth says it doesn't. "Trump continues to just have his one strike" (remaining).

Roth's colleague's query about "incitement to violence" heavily foreshadows what will happen the following day.

On January 8, Twitter announces a permanent ban on Trump due to the "risk of further incitement of violence."

On J8, Twitter says its ban is based on "specifically how [Trump's tweets] are being received & interpreted."

But in 2019, Twitter said it did "not attempt to determine all potential interpretations of the content or its intent."

This is similar to what I said in the last installment, regarding Twitter nearly Mike Huckabee for making an obvious joke. Twitter debated whether or not they should ban him because people might be "confused" by the joke.

This is what leftwing "fact-checkers" do all the time: If it's a liberal telling a joke, that's the end of the inquiry. It's a joke. Therefore it's not misleading. There's no fact to check in a joke.

But if it's a conservative telling a joke, they start scrutinizing for "intent," "capacity to mislead," etc.

If a liberal statement is true on its face, then it's true. End of analysis. But leftwing fact checkers won't allow a conservative statement to be rated as true if it's merely true on its face -- they'll search to see if it has any possible implications which they can quibble with. And if they disagree with those implications, the statement is false (or partly false). Note the liberal statements also of course have implications of dubious veracity -- but the leftwing fact-checkers never bother checking those.

"Fact" checkers terminate inquiries into the veracity of leftwing statements as quickly as possible, finding them to be factual, but do the most probing possible analyses of conservative statements, from the subatomic scale to the transcendental metaphysical levels of what the statement "could possibly mean to someone."

If Taibbi isn't careful, he'll wind up overturning the applecart on the whole "fact" checking scam!

I'm skipping through a bit, and picking up with Twitter's decision to suspend the "public interest" policy with respect to Trump only.

The public interest policy states that some accounts will be kept up, even though they violate Twitter's rules, because they are important for discussions of public policy. This is why, for example, Twitter doesn't ban the Ayatollah of Iran.

But Twitter decided to suspend this policy for one person only. Trump would not be protected by it; the Ayatollah of Iran would continue to enjoy its protections.

Michael Shellenberger @ShellenbergerMD

What happens next is essential to understanding how Twitter justified banning Trump.

Sales exec: "are we dropping the public interest [policy] now..."

Roth, six hours later: "In this specific case, we're changing our public interest approach for his account..."


Roth pushes for a permanent suspension of Rep. Matt Gaetz even though it "doesn't quite fit anywhere (duh)"

It's a kind of test case for the rationale for banning Trump.

"I'm trying to talk [Twitter's] safety [team] into... removal as a conspiracy that incites violence."

Note that Roth is admitting here he's not even trying to apply rules. He just wants to ban people he doesn't approve of.

Not many people would approve of "Otterific" and his lecherous feelings about buff bears holding babies, but those kind of people have all been gate-kept out of Twitter.

Around 2:30, comms execs DM Roth to say they don't want to make a big deal of the QAnon ban to the media because they fear "if we push this it looks we're trying to offer up something in place of the thing everyone wants," meaning a Trump ban.

By "everyone," does he mean people at Twitter, or the leftwingers like Michelle Obama -- a government official, note; she had her own government staff as First "Lady" -- demanding that Trump be banned?

Not sure. But I do know who's not included in "everyone" -- anyone who isn't rabidly leftwing.

There are other tweets, but I'll refer you to the thread for them.

Schellenberger ends by quoting a Twitter employee who was one of the very few (possibly the only?) Twitter employees to express the "unpopular opinion" that Twitter's constant changing of the rules to ban who they subjectively wanted to ban and then claim "the rules forced us to ban this person" was all a sham.

Michael Shellenberger @ShellenbergerMD

Earlier that day, the employee wrote, "My concern is specifically surrounding the unarticulated logic of the decision by [FaceBook to ban Trump]. That space fills with the idea (conspiracy theory?) that all... internet moguls... sit around like kings casually deciding what people can and cannot see."

The employee notes, later in the day, "And Will Oremus noticed the inconsistency too...," linking to an article for OneZero at Medium called, "Facebook Chucked Its

"The underlying problem," writes @WillOremus, is that "the dominant platforms have always been loath to own up to their subjectivity, because it highlights the extraordinary, unfettered power they wield over the global public square and places the responsibility for that power on their own shoulders... So they hide behind an ever-changing rulebook, alternately pointing to it when it's convenient and shoving it under the nearest rug when it isn't."

That article is here:

Facebook Chucked Its Own Rulebook to Ban Trump

The move is a reminder of social platforms' power over online speech -- and the inconsistency with which they wield it

This is part of the same lie when they claim "THE ALGORITHM" is pushing conservatives to the bottom of search results, when they know damn well it was their own biased human intervention that taught "the algorithm" to sort conservatives at the end. Like the leftwing media itself, they are constantly making partisan, biased calls based on their own politics, but then inventing childishly-stupid "rules" they claim they're following. See, it's not partisanship -- it's just these "rules" they're following, and then not following, based on whether or not they like the person who would be hurt or helped by the rules.

Below, from The Neo-Neo: Leftism requires censorship to exist.

digg this
posted by Ace at 03:59 PM

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