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Tuesday, October 27, 2020

Twitter Backs Down After Major Backlash for Censoring Hunter Biden Story

Amid accusations of bias, censorship and abuse of its vast power that erupted across America after Twitter muzzled revelations about Hunter Biden and his father, Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden, the social media giant says it will make a few changes.

But don’t count on tweeting links to a bombshell report about Hunter Biden any time soon.

Twitter’s Vijaya Gadde issued a series of tweets Thursday concerning the platform’s Hacked Materials Policy, which it had been using to justify shutting down accounts — including the personal account of White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany and the official Trump campaign account — that tried to share stories first published by the New York Post that were based on a copy of a computer hard driver allegedly found in a Delaware computer repair shop. None of the materials was obtained through hacking.

The stories noted that among the contents of the hard drive was an email from a Ukrainian businessman thanking Hunter Biden for an introduction to his father, who was then vice president in the Obama administration. Joe Biden had steadfastly denied any involvement in his son’s business interests.

The hard drive also had details on Hunter Biden’s dealings with Chinese officials, according to the Post, and included photos of Hunter Biden smoking what appeared to be crack and engaging in sex.

“Over the last 24 hours, we’ve received significant feedback (from critical to supportive) about how we enforced our Hacked Materials Policy yesterday. After reflecting on this feedback, we have decided to make changes to the policy and how we enforce it,” wrote Gadde, who directs the company’s legal, policy, and trust and safety divisions.

After a series of tweets offering purported reasons for the changes, Gadde, the legal, policy, and trust and safety lead at Twitter, got to the meat.

“So, what’s changing?” she tweeted.

“1. We will no longer remove hacked content unless it is directly shared by hackers or those acting in concert with them.

“2. We will label Tweets to provide context instead of blocking links from being shared on Twitter.”

Gadde went on to say, “All the other Twitter Rules will still apply to the posting of or linking to hacked materials, such as our rules against posting private information, synthetic and manipulated media, and non-consensual nudity.”

That led to some follow-up discussion in which Twitter spokesman Brandon Borrman made it clear that the platform will still block links to the New York Post stories about Hunter Biden, at least for now.

The president’s campaign blasted Twitter for its actions.

“This is election interference, plain and simple. For Twitter to lock the main account of the campaign of the president of the United States is a breathtaking level of political meddling and nothing short of an attempt to rig the election,” Trump campaign communications director Tim Murtaugh told Fox News.

“Joe Biden’s Silicon Valley pals are aggressively blocking negative news stories about their guy and preventing voters from accessing important information,” he said. “This is like something from communist China or Cuba, not the United States of America.”

Andrew Clark, the campaign’s rapid response director, told the outlet, “This is chilling censorship of a sitting president’s re-election campaign 19 days from an election, plain and simple.

“Twitter is interfering in the election and trying to stop the public from learning damning information about the Biden family’s corruption at all cost, but our campaign and our supporters will not be silenced.”

We are committed to truth and accuracy in all of our journalism. Read our editorial standards.



Westernjournal

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