Yesterday Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey and Facebook boss Mark Zuckerberg testified before the Senate Judiciary Committee.
The hearing was titled “Breaking the News: Censorship, Suppression, and the 2020 Election.”
Senator Ted Cruz grilled Dorsey for how they handled the Hunter Biden email story that was broken by the New York Post.
Cruz had Dorsey define what a “publisher” is then uses his response to point out that they basically acting as a publisher when they black the story from being shared on the platform.
Dorsey defined a publisher as “an entity that is publishing under editorial guidelines and decisions.” Cruz highlights how Twitter completely blocked the NY Post article on Hunter Biden’s laptop by using “editorial guidelines and decisions.”
He pointed out that when it came to the NY Times article on Trump’s taxes, twitter didn’t take any action.
Dorsey claimed that the NY Times article was just ‘reporting’ on hacked materials so they didn’t block it.
Cruz then brought up how a Politico reporter was locked out of his account for posting the Post story while asking the Biden campaign for a comment.
Cruz noted that Twitter was using their star chamber power as a publisher, determining which stories a reporter could write and publish.
“TED CRUZ: So on October 15, Jake Sherman, a reporter at Politico tweeted the following. "I tweeted a link to the 'New York Post' story right after it dropped yesterday morning. I immediately reached out to the Biden campaign to see if they had any answer. I wish I'd given the story a closer read before tweeting it. Twitter suspended me."
So you actually have a reporter reporting on a story, asking the other side for comment, and Twitter says, "Hi, Jake Sherman, your account @JakeSherman has been locked for violating Twitter rules." Now, what did the Politico reporter do? He immediately tweets after that, "My goal was not to spread information." Well, that's a little worrisome just on-- in and of itself.
"My goal was to raise questions about the story. Oh, my overlords in Silicon Valley, I was attacking 'The New York Post.' You don't understand. I was attacking them, as I did in subsequent tweets, and see how the Biden campaign was going to respond."
They later did respond. And then not long after, Jake Sherman comes back with, "My account is clearly no longer suspended. I deleted the tweet."
When Twitter is editing, and censoring, and silencing "The New York Post," the four-- the newspaper with the fourth-highest circulation in the country, and Politico, one of the leading newspapers in the country, is Twitter behaving as a publisher when it's deciding what stories reporters are allowed to write and publish and what stories they're not?
JACK DORSEY: No, and that account was not suspended. It followed the hacked materials policy. We realized that there was an error in that policy and the enforcement.
TED CRUZ: Hold on--
JACK DORSEY: We corrected that within 24 hours.
TED CRUZ: --I'm literally looking at a tweet from Twitter that says, "Your account has been locked." You're telling me that this is not an accurate--
JACK DORSEY: That's a lock. That's a lock and can be unlocked when you delete the offending tweet.
TED CRUZ: I understand that you have the star chamber power. Your answer is always, well, once we silence you, we can choose to allow you to speak. But you are engaged in publishing decisions.”