New ‘Twitter Files’ Release Shows That Twitter Shadow Banned Users While Lying About It

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The ongoing release of the “Twitter Files” has been a fascinating subplot to Elon Musk buying the social media giant.

Musk took over with the intention of making the company free speech friendly and has already made progress towards that goal.

But perhaps just as importantly, he’s been releasing information from inside the company showing how Twitter censored its users.

The first release of information uncovered an extremely concerning dynamic between Twitter and government.


Musk recently fired the company’s top lawyer, who had been surreptitiously vetting the documents as they were released.


But the now-former employee wasn’t able to prevent the second batch of files from hitting the internet Thursday night.

Independent journalist Bari Weiss posted a lengthy thread with internal screenshots. Her posts revealed how employees used specific policy actions to censor prominent users without their knowledge.

Fox host Dan Bongino is one such individual. He was placed on a “search blacklist,” designed to make it harder for users to find his account.

Dan Bongino was censored on Twitter
Fox Host Dan Bongino was one of many users shadow banned by Twitter. (Photo by Roy Rochlin/Getty Images)

Twitter Shadow Banning

According to Weiss, the company also engaged in “visibility filtering.”

That meant internal policy teams would put notations on user accounts like “do not amplify.”

It also meant more direct blacklisting, described by Weiss as their ability to “block searches of individual users; to limit the scope of a particular tweet’s discoverability; to block select users’ posts from ever appearing on the ‘trending’ page; and from inclusion in hashtag searches.”

Several years ago, the company specifically denied that they limited account or post visibility.

Weiss quoted Vijaya Gadde, former Head of Legal Policy and Trust and Kayvon Beykpour, Head of Product, saying: “We do not shadow ban. And we certainly don’t shadow ban based on political viewpoints or ideology,” they added.

Turns out that was a complete lie.

Libs of TikTok was another frequent target, as an internal committee suspended her repeatedly despite no specific violations of company policy.

But that’s not remotely surprising, is it?

Censorship Favors One Side

It’s long been apparent to anyone paying the slightest bit of attention that Twitter favors certain viewpoints over others.

The overwhelming majority of employee donations, nearly 100% in some cases, went to Democrats.

So they used their power and influence in one of the world’s most important companies to prioritize enforcing left wing ideology.

OutKick founder Clay Travis discussed the one-sided blacklisting with Sean Hannity.

The creation of so-called “trust and safety” teams were really a front to give cover to politically-motivated censorship.

Exposing absurd behavior of radical activist teachers, as Libs of TikTok did, could now be described as “dangerous.”

Twitter also enforced these policies to silence dissent against government-promoted COVID mandates.

Questioning the efficacy of masks or need for vaccine passports became grounds for suspensions or permanent bans.

Dr. Jay Bhattacharya, an eminently qualified public health expert, was another target of Twitter shadow banning.

Credentials and accuracy are irrelevant; Bhattacharya ascribes to the wrong ideological viewpoint. The CDC director, Biden officials, and many other liberal “experts” were repeatedly wrong and spread disprovable disinformation.

That didn’t matter to Twitter, because they were on the left.

While the extent of the censorship at the company is unsurprising, it’s still shocking that it was so organized and consistent.

Everything people assumed Twitter was doing to help their political allies happened. They shadow banned people they disagreed with, and then lied about it in public. Repeatedly.

Seeing this released was unquestionably worth $44 billion. And it’s already been announced there’s a third part coming.

Get ready.

Written by Ian Miller

Ian Miller is a former award watching high school actor, ice cream expert and long suffering Dodgers fan. He spends most of his time golfing, eating as much pizza as humanly possible, reading about World War I history, and trying to get the remote back from his dog. Follow him on Twitter.

One Comment

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  1. I’m no attorney, but at some point doesn’t the FTC need to become involved? This seems to constitute a pretty significant restraint of trade. From the FTC website:

    The Federal Trade Commission Act is the primary statute of the Commission. Under this Act, as amended, the Commission is empowered, among other things, to (a) prevent unfair methods of competition and unfair or deceptive acts or practices in or affecting commerce; (b) seek monetary redress and other relief for conduct injurious to consumers; (c) prescribe rules defining with specificity acts or practices that are unfair or deceptive, and establishing requirements designed to prevent such acts or practices; (d) gather and compile information and conduct investigations relating to the organization, business, practices, and management of entities engaged in commerce; and (e) make reports and legislative recommendations to Congress and the public. A number of other statutes listed here are enforced under the FTC Act.

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