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Missouri Investigates Media Matters For Fraudulently Fundraising Off Of Efforts To Demonetize Free Speech

Missouri AG Andrew Bailey
Image CreditKSDK News/YouTube

Bailey said Media Matters’ ‘alleged effort to … solicit charitable contributions under false pretenses’ deserves further scrutiny.


Missouri Attorney General Andrew Bailey is investigating Media Matters for America for “potentially unlawful business practices” including allegedly using fraud to bully advertisers from abandoning their partnerships with social media platform X, formerly known as Twitter.

In his letter announcing the investigation, Bailey warned that Media Matters’ attempt to punish “the last platform dedicated to free speech in America” could constitute a violation of his state’s consumer protection laws barring nonprofits from “soliciting funds under false pretenses.”

“I am especially concerned that Media Matters’ actions, if proven true, have hampered free speech by targeting an expressly pro free speech social media platform in an attempt to cause it financial harm while defrauding Missourians in the process,” Bailey wrote.

Bailey’s investigation stems from a Media Matters “report” released in November accusing X of publishing advertisements for big companies like Apple, Bravo, IBM, Oracle, and Xfinity alongside “pro-Nazi content.” Media Matters’ activism, which relied on a manipulated feed they carefully curated to “alienate advertisers,” pushed several of the aforementioned companies to pull their ads from the free speech platform.

X owner Elon Musk quickly filed what he called a “thermonuclear” defamation lawsuit against Media Matters for accusing him of backing antisemitism. In legal documents, Musk claimed the left-wing organization “knowingly and maliciously manufactured side-by-side images depicting advertisers’ posts on X Corp.’s social media platform beside Neo-Nazi and white-nationalist fringe content and then portrayed these manufactured images as if they were what typical X users experience on the platform.”

“The lawsuit alleges that you lied to the public, falsely suggesting that fringe, extremist content regularly appears next to content from corporate advertisers when in fact the opposite is true,” Bailey wrote. “At the same time, you appear to have used this coordinated, inauthentic activity to solicit charitable donations from consumers across the country.”

Bailey said Media Matters’ “alleged effort to engage in coordinated, inauthentic behavior on social media platforms in order to generate false statements that were used to solicit charitable contributions under false pretenses” deserves further scrutiny. He demanded the propaganda organization hand over any internal communications and documents and communications with X advertisers related to its plans to distance advertisers from X.

Bailey also requested any Media Matters’ communications about “strategies or operations related to generating stories or content intended to ‘cancel,’ ‘deplatform,’ ‘demonetize,’ or otherwise interfere with businesses or organizations located in Missouri, or utilized by Missouri residents” and “soliciting charitable funds from residents of Missouri.”

“Radicals are attempting to kill Twitter because they cannot control it, and we are not going to let Missourians get ripped off in the process,” Bailey said in a statement. “I’m fighting to ensure progressive tyrants masquerading as news outlets cannot manipulate the marketplace in order to wipe out free speech.”

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