This week saw yet another instance of the Masters of the Universe at Twitter deciding to suspend, if only briefly, the account of another conservative activist. This time it was James O’Keefe and the suspension came shortly after his latest release of sting videos which we already covered here. Independent Journal Review describes it as a situation of the videos being “so hot” that he was immediately suspended from the social media platform, but I’m sure that’s not the line the company is taking.
The sequence of events leading up to and following the suspension is listed over at Project Veritas.
After releasing two viral videos over the last two days, Project Veritas Founder and President James O’Keefe is no longer allowed to access his Twitter account. According to Twitter, he is blocked from accessing his account for twelve hours, at which point they reserve the right to make him pass additional hurdles to access his account.
On Tuesday, O’Keefe released a video which shows Manhattan Democratic Election Commissioner Alan Schulkin admitting that voter fraud does indeed exist.
On Wednesday, O’Keefe released a video which shows a male Hillary Clinton staffer stating: “To be fired I would have to grab Emma’s [female coworker] ass twice and she would have to complain about it, I would have to sexually harass someone.”
While I won’t be terribly shocked to learn that the Powers That Be at Twitter aren’t thrilled with having these videos show up, they generally have to come up with a better explanation than that. The closest thing we see to a case of probable cause seems to be this tweet from earlier in the week.
Really? Is that where the bar is set now? If there were even a plausible basis to suggest that O’Keefe was literally talking about possessing and detonating a tactical weapon in the coming days then I would not only support the suspension but wonder why the FBI wasn’t already involved. But they won’t be. (Or at least they certainly shouldn’t.) As a rhetorical device this may not have been the best choice of words imaginable, but it’s also as common as houseflies. Saying that you’re going to be “dropping some bombs” with your upcoming story is no different than referring to something as “a bombshell.” It’s used everywhere, including on the front page of the New York Times and Washington Post as well as around the discussion tables on Fox, CNN and MSNBC. Only the most addled minds could see that as a threat of violence.
Far more likely is that this, or some other, equally thin excuse, served as a mechanism to suspend the account of another conservative and it’s been happening too often to ignore. Whether you’re talking about Milo Yiannopoulos or even the brief suspension of the Blogfather, this has become an all too familiar pattern. But what to do about it? I know there have been other sites delivering what is essentially the same services as Twitter, but none of them have caught on to the point where they could seriously challenge the status quo. As long as we’re all still using Twitter all day, every day, they have a free hand. And it’s a private company, not a government service, so we can’t really force them to change their policies.
For now I suppose all we can do is tuck this one in our notebooks as yet another example of the liberal hands guiding Twitter’s decision making process.