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April 13, 2023
According to newly released “Twitter Files,” Twitter kept “blacklists” that included a doctor at Stanford and several prominent conservative voices.
The blacklist reportedly suppressed their ability to be found or heard on the social media platform, according to journalist Bari Weiss, who has reviewed and published part two of Elon Musk’s so-called “Twitter Files” last week.
Weiss tweeted what appeared to be a photo of Dr. Jay Bhattacharya, a Stanford professor and the director of Stanford’s Center for Demography and Economics of Health and Aging. The photo showed that the doctor’s account had been marked as being under a “Trends Blacklist.”
According to Weiss, Bhattacharya was blacklisted after he “argued that Covid lockdowns would harm children,” thereby preventing him from being able to trend on the platform.
Other Twitter users reportedly placed under similar blacklists included Turning Point USA founder Charlie Kirk, whose was put under a “Do Not Amplify” notice and conservative commentator Dan Bongino, who was placed under a “Search Blacklist.”
The practice of limiting the access or reach of users’ content, commonly referred to as “shadow banning,” is something that Twitter has denied doing in the past, and is referred to internally as “Visibility Filtering” or “VF,” Weiss reported.
Weiss reported that two teams managed such “visibility filtering” and a second group handled high-profile, politically sensitive accounts.
The second group included former Head of Legal, Policy and Trust Vijaya Gadde, former Global Head of Trust and Safety Yoel Roth, as well as then-CEOs Jack Dorsey and Parag Agrawal, Weiss reported.
Weiss’ thread came a week after Matt Taibbi, a contributing editor at Rolling Stone, launched “Part One” of Musk’s Twitter Files. Part One focused primarily on Twitter’s role in suppressing the spread of a politically-damaging story about President Biden and his son Hunter.
ARTICLE: PAUL MURDOCH
MANAGING EDITOR: CARSON CHOATE
PHOTO CREDITS: WASHINGTON TIMES