Thomas Gallatin / December 2, 2021

Twitter’s New CEO Is Even Woker Than Dorsey

This move spells more not less speech censorship on the social media giant’s platform.

The cofounder and CEO of Big Tech and social media giant Twitter, Jack Dorsey, stepped down from his position earlier this week, handing over the reins to the company’s longtime Chief Technology Officer Parag Agrawal.

Explaining his decision, the 45-year-old billionaire said: “There’s a lot of talk about the importance of a company being ‘founder led.’ Ultimately, I believe that’s severely limiting and a single point of failure. I’ve worked hard to ensure this company can break from its founding and founders.”

Well, if any conservatives are tempted to celebrate this change after having suffered under Dorsey’s increasingly illiberal censorship crusade as our own Mark Alexander has attested, then you might want to keep that champagne on ice. Dorsey’s hand-picked successor makes him look like a libertarian.

To put it bluntly, conservative Twitter users should expect even more censorship of their speech, not less. Agrawal has made it clear that he has little love for the First Amendment, specifically regarding the protection of freedom of speech.

In an interview a year ago, Agrawal was asked the following question: “You’re caught in a bit of a hard place as somebody in the audience is also pointing out, that you’re trying to combat misinformation. You also want to protect free speech as a core value, and also in the U.S. as the First Amendment. How do you balance those two?”

Agrawal responded, “Our role is not to be bound by the First Amendment, but our role is to serve a healthy public conversation, and our moves are reflective of things that we believe lead to a healthier public conversation.”

He further explained: “The kinds of things that we do about this is, focus less on thinking about free speech, but thinking about how the times have changed. One of the changes today that we see is speech is easy on the internet. Most people can speak. Where our role is particularly emphasized is who can be heard. The scarce commodity today is attention. … We’re working through in terms of how we make sure these recommendation systems that we’re building, how we direct people’s attention is leading to a healthy public conversation that is most participatory.”

Yikes!

Of course, the obvious question is who gets to determine what speech should be “emphasized” and who’s deserving of being heard. For Agrawal, the obvious answer is himself. How trustworthy is he? Well, he has made clear that he’s fully onboard the woke train via his own social media posts like this one: “If they are not gonna make a distinction between muslims and extremists, they why should I distinguish between white people and racists.”

Digging a little bit further into Twitter’s newly anointed CEO, he was also responsible for finding leadership for Twitter’s research project known as Project Bluesky, which aims to help social media companies collaborate to create social networks to better police and prevent “hate speech.” In other words, it’s a system designed to allow Twitter to censor speech beyond its own platform.

This is precisely what Democrats have been pressing Big Tech to engage in, all under the guise of preventing the spread of “misinformation.” In fact, just yesterday House Democrats called for legislation that would change Section 230 protections covering social media platforms to allow users to sue these companies for “emotional injury.” Republican Representative Cathy McMorris Rodgers (WA) called it what it is: “a thinly veiled attempt to pressure companies to censor more speech.” If, she says, “companies will have to decide between leaving up content that may offend someone and fight it in court, or censor content that reaches a user — which do you think they’ll choose?”

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