Amid the considerable fallout from the “Twitter Files,” which have thus far proven beyond question that the social media platform colluded with Democrats and the FBI to silence conservative voices, former CEO Jack Dorsey is again under fire, after his memory-holed 2018 testimony before the House Energy and Commerce Committee has resurfaced to bite him.
Dorsey appeared under oath before the committee to discuss Twitter’s “Transparency and Accountability,” and was asked point blank by GOP lawmakers if his company shadow-banned accounts belonging to conservatives.
“I want to read a few quotes about Twitter’s practices and I just want you to tell me if they’re true or not,” Rep. Mike Doyle (D-Penn.) told Dorsey. “Social media is being rigged to censor conservatives. Is that true of Twitter?”
“No,” said Dorsey.
“Are you censoring people?” Doyle asked.
Again, Dorsey replied, “No.”
“Twitter’s shadow-banning prominent Republicans…” Doyle pressed. “Is that true?”
“No,” Dorsey stated.
Speaking to Rep. Steve Scalise (R-La.), Dorsey said that his company’s algorithm was not written with the intention of shadow-banning GOP lawmakers.
Of course, we now know — thanks to the journalists who have been given unprecedented access to Twitter’s internal documents by the new CEO, billionaire Elon Musk — that Twitter was doing all of the above for years.
“The group that decided whether to limit the reach of certain users was the Strategic Response Team – Global Escalation Team, or SRT-GET,” reported Bari Weiss in the second installment of the Twitter Files. “It often handled up to 200 ‘cases’ a day.”
“But there existed a level beyond official ticketing, beyond the rank-and-file moderators following the company’s policy on paper,” she continued. “That is the ‘Site Integrity Policy, Policy Escalation Support,’ known as ‘SIP-PES.’ This secret group included Head of Legal, Policy, and Trust (Vijaya Gadde), the Global Head of Trust & Safety (Yoel Roth), subsequent CEOs Jack Dorsey and Parag Agrawal, and others.”
“This is where the biggest, most politically sensitive decisions got made,” she stated.
13. But there existed a level beyond official ticketing, beyond the rank-and-file moderators following the company’s policy on paper. That is the “Site Integrity Policy, Policy Escalation Support,” known as “SIP-PES.”
— Bari Weiss (@bariweiss) December 9, 2022
15. This is where the biggest, most politically sensitive decisions got made. “Think high follower account, controversial,” another Twitter employee told us. For these “there would be no ticket or anything.”
— Bari Weiss (@bariweiss) December 9, 2022
However, there is some question as to how much Dorsey actually knew about his own company.
“Controversial decisions were often made without getting Jack’s approval and he was unaware of systemic bias,” Musk tweeted. The inmates were running the asylum.”
“Jack has a pure heart imo,” he added.
Controversial decisions were often made without getting Jack’s approval and he was unaware of systemic bias. The inmates were running the asylum.
Jack has a pure heart imo.
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) December 9, 2022
It’s a difficult line for many on Twitter to swallow.
If Dorsey didn’t know that conservatives were being shadow-banned, he certainly should have. Angry users tweeted him about it constantly.
@Jack Kindly lift the shadow-ban on my account! Thank you.
— WhatsInAName (@ada_erd2) July 7, 2021
@jack why did you shadow-ban me? Is it because I am a nurse?
— BigMamaNurse (@BigNurse20281) July 26, 2018
Twitter is well known to discriminate, shadow-ban and ban its users at its own will for no reason at all. (Most of its users and many governments are already tired of this.)
— Windows Portable Apps (@WPA_1) June 11, 2021
According to George Washington University Law Professor Jonathan Turley, Dorsey’s provably false testimony could now leave him open to perjury charges.
“On its face, Dorsey has vulnerability after the latest release. Dorsey was repeatedly asked about censoring and shadow banning, which has now been confirmed in these files,” Turley told the New York Post.
“The greatest defense for Dorsey may be found in the Justice Department itself,” he continued. “Any prosecution of Twitter executives could prove a hard sell for Attorney General Merrick Garland, whose department has been repeatedly accused of pronounced political bias.”
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