Before Elon Musk bought Twitter, corporate journalists freely persecuted their political enemies by posting their identities and locations to enable in-person harassment, but not anymore. This week, Musk decided he’s no longer allowing anyone, including journalists, to jeopardize people’s safety via Twitter, and he began temporarily suspending the accounts of offending members of the press.
“Everyone’s going to be treated the same. You’re not special because you’re a journalist,” Musk wrote in a Twitter post.
The crackdown on doxxing is personal for Twitter’s CEO. On Wednesday, Musk reported that his 2-year-old son named “X” was followed by a “crazy stalker” who had mistaken X for Musk. According to Musk, the stalker blocked the car driving his son and “climbed onto the hood.” The incident motivated Musk to suspend several high-profile journalists guilty of doxxing.
This caused the corporate media to fly into hysterics. “Elon Musk censors the press,” said one CNN headline.” “[U]nprecedented,” stated the flabbergasted Axios. “Twitter suspends journalists who wrote about owner Elon Musk,” alleged The Associated Press. “Musk has begun banning journalists who have criticized him on Twitter,” whined Washington Post TikTok reporter Taylor Lorenz.
All this outrage is performative. Firstly, Musk made it clear why the journalists are suspended, and it’s not because they “criticized” him, as Lorenz said. “Criticizing me all day long is totally fine, but doxxing my real-time location and endangering my family is not,” wrote Musk.
Secondly, the propaganda press doesn’t care about freedom of the press or free speech. They cheer on and instigate the de-platforming of competing journalists and news organizations. The only thing the media cares about is losing its monopoly on digital discourse and the special treatment it received from pre-Musk Twitter staff.
Before Musk, the corporate media enjoyed gross privileges awarded to them by their ideological allies at Twitter. When Lorenz outed the identity of the formerly anonymous woman who runs the “Libs of TikTok” Twitter account, Lorenz was never disciplined. As the “The Twitter Files” reveal, if Twitter staff did try to sanction left-wing users for violating Twitter rules, senior executives at the company would swoop in behind the scenes and protect them.
Meanwhile, countless conservative journalists were subject to random suspensions, locked accounts, and bans for harassment-free thought crimes. The Federalist’s Senior Editor John Davidson continues to be locked out of his Twitter account because in March he tweeted the truth: Rachel Levine, the U.S. assistant secretary for health, is a man. Levine, a transgender male, is indeed a man and no amount of makeup or surgery will change that, yet Twitter penalized Davidson for promoting “hate speech.” It still is penalizing him.
Former President Donald Trump was perhaps Twitter’s most high-profile ban. While he was still in office, Twitter nuked Trump’s account. The “Twitter Files” show Twitter moderators admitted at the time of his banning that Trump had not violated any terms of service. The “Twitter Files” also revealed that the very real Hunter Biden laptop story was banished from the app even though it didn’t violate any of Twitter’s stated rules, either.
Unlike conservatives who were political targets of Twitter’s pre-Musk censorship regime, journalists suspended for doxxing are instigating real, physical harm. People outed and targeted by corporate media for expressing conservative views have been fired, had their businesses harassed and ruined, and been targeted for violence. Unlike the shadowbanning of Davis, the banishment of Trump, and the nuking of the Hunter Biden laptop story, doxxing journalists know exactly what Twitter rule they violated. Musk told them in plain words.
The leftist media complex is in a frenzy because it lost some privileges after Elon took over. “Handled,” one Twitter employee wrote to a “connected actor” who requested the deletion of disliked tweets, according to the “Twitter Files.”
That kind of special treatment is over. Twitter’s “rules for thee, but not for me” policy is gone, and the propaganda press is going to have to get used to it.