The battle over Twitter is often made to appear complex and chaotic, but it can all be boiled down to a simple dichotomy – It’s about the people who demand censorship in favor of the establishment narrative vs. the people who want free speech and fair rules applied to everyone equally.
Everything else is noise and distraction.
The complications arise when we try to define free speech when it comes to social media. Private companies are not subject to many legal boundaries related to free speech rights. This is an argument that the political left and government representatives made constantly during the massive purge of conservative and liberty oriented accounts by Big Tech companies since 2016. And, as we saw with Twitter previous to Elon Musk’s takeover, governments took full advantage of this legal loophole in order to silence people using social media websites as middlemen.
The ongoing release of the Twitter Files proves beyond a shadow of a doubt that collusion between Big Tech and governments for the sake of censorship is a reality. In America, at least, this is a constitutional no-no. The fact that politicians and agencies like the FBI were actively seeking out and targeting ideological opponents and having them silenced on Twitter is a direct violation of the 1st Amendment and these people should be subject to prosecution (the FBI even shelled out at least $3 million to Twitter for services rendered).
Prosecution might never happen, but at least the evidence is undeniable today after years of the public being lied to.
The reality that Twitter was acting as an enforcement agent for government censorship around the world tells us exactly why so many establishment officials have been up in arms over Musk’s purchase of the platform. Until now, every single major Big Tech company has been operating in lock-step with the establishment narrative. People couldn’t even talk about Hunter Biden’s laptop, let alone talk about the inconvenient facts surrounding “climate change” or the covid mandates and vaccines.
This is a dynamic that elitists would still like to keep in place, and they are looking to use international trade rules as a means to pressure Musk into conforming.
EU Commissioner for Values and Transparency Věra Jourová makes a statement from the frozen doorstep of Davos arguing that Twitter is subject to EU rules for preventing “harm to society”.
“The time of the Wild West is over,” Jourova told EuroNews.
“We will have the Digital Services Act [DSA]. We will have the Code of Practice as a part of this legislation.”
“So, after Mr Musk took over Twitter with his ‘freedom of speech absolutism,’ we are the protectors of freedom of speech as well,” she added.
“But at the same time, we cannot accept, for instance, illegal content online and so on. So, our message was clear: we have rules which have to be complied with, otherwise there will be sanctions.”
Who is Věra Jourová to determine what type of speech is harmful to society? She’s a bureaucrat who has long insisted that “hate speech” laws utilized in the EU should be instituted in the US. In other words, she’s nobody.
But two very important conclusions can be derived from her statements here.
First, she is essentially admitting that the EU Commission was working directly with the previous Twitter leadership to censor the public in a bid to control their behavior.
Second, establishment bureaucrats overseas assume that they should have the power to dictate the policies of private media companies in the US when it comes to communication.
It should be noted that these same bureaucrats were defending Twitter operations as a private company only a year ago (as long as company policies fell in line with government messaging). As soon as Twitter started to allow more free speech, suddenly its operations as a private company became an international problem.
Again, the conflict is about one question – Should people be allowed say what they want and share the information that they want within the confines of constitutional law? For those that believe the answer is no, we have to then ask “Why?” What about free speech is so threatening to them? Can mere speech really do damage to society? Is this really about public safety? Or, is it about power, and the means to lie to the public while removing their ability to contradict?