No, what Senator Rubio did was not “doxxing”—outing an anonymous Internet user’s “IRL” identity. Salt Bae is a quasi celebrity, and the location of his steakhouses is hardly a state secret. But by including not just the address of Salt Bae’s Miami restaurants (at least plausibly, therefore, simply urging people to boycott the business), but also the phone number in his tweet, the senator crossed a line.
What good, after all, does the phone number do? Salt Bae does not live in Miami—he’s based in Turkey. And even if he were in Miami, good luck getting him on the phone at his restaurant by calling the main line. Providing the phone number, therefore, can only do one thing: Encourage a campaign of harassment against beleaguered wait staff, maître d’s, chefs, and whoever is unlucky enough to pick up the phone there for the next few days. Workers, in other words, who have nothing to do with their boss’s bad political judgement.