Twitter on Friday lifted a freeze on the New York Post’s account and said it had changed its policy on hacked materials.
The newspaper shared a post that featured Twitter’s logo, a blue bird, flying out of a cage. The caption reads, “Free Bird! Twitter backs down, finally unlocks Post account after Biden ban.”
“They can tweet the exact same … article and it would go through.”
A Twitter spokesperson had told the Post on Oct. 15: “While we’ve updated the policy, we don’t change enforcement retroactively. You will still need to delete the tweet to regain access to your account.”
The New York Post never deleted its post. Twitter said on Friday it is “willing to update and adjust them when we encounter new scenarios or receive important feedback from the public,” citing the New York Post situation as an example.
“In response, we’re updating our practice of not retroactively overturning prior enforcement. Decisions made under policies that are subsequently changed & published can now be appealed if the account at issue is a driver of that change. We believe this is fair and appropriate,” it added. “This means that because a specific @nypost enforcement led us to update the Hacked Materials Policy, we will no longer restrict their account under the terms of the previous policy and they can now Tweet again.”
There’s no evidence that the Post’s report was based on hacked materials. Former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani said he provided the New York Post with a laptop hard drive that purportedly belonged to Hunter Biden, which was reportedly left at a computer repair shop in Delaware last year and never picked up. Reports have suggested that whoever left the laptop at the store never paid their bill.
Cruz later said that Dorsey, Twitter, and Facebook “made the unilateral” decision to block the Post over its reporting on the Bidens’ dealings with the Ukrainian energy firm Burisma Holdings and a Chinese Communist Party-linked firm.
Dorsey flatly rejected Cruz’s accusation that Twitter is attempting to censor the New York Post or other news outlets, saying they have to agree to Twitter’s “terms of service.”
Section 230The Section 230 provision shields tech companies from liability for content posted on their platforms while letting them moderate content, including on political discourse.
Section 230 states that “no provider or user of an interactive computer service shall be treated as the publisher or speaker of any information provided by another information content provider.”
The provision also “tried to encourage these companies to take down things like child pornography or human trafficking advertising … by saying, if you act to remove this kind of objectionable material, you won’t be liable for taking it down,” Barr said.
“Now it’s been completely stretched to allow what have become really behemoths who control a lot of the flow of information in our society to engage in censorship of that information and to act as editors and publishers of the material,” he noted.