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Twitter’s Censorship — Child Porn (Shrug… ), MDs’ Doubts: NO!

Twitter censored doctors and researchers who raised doubts about COVID strategies but seemed helpless about child porn

Earlier this week, we looked at The Verge’s groundbreaking coverage of Twitter’s inability to prioritize and address child porn (and non-consensual nudity) at the site. One of the authors, Casey Newton, followed up Wednesday at Platformer,, filling readers in on new facts that he and Zoe Schiffer learned from a former Twitter employee after their story was published.

One was that “Twitter’s move would draw Apple’s attention to the significant amount of porn on the service, and potentially place new restrictions on its iOS app or even remove it from the App Store.” That’s no idle threat, Newton reminds us. In 2018, Tumblr was dropped from the Apple app store when “child sexual abuse material (CSAM) was found on the platform”. A month later, Tumblr dropped the adult content as well. He wonders why Twitter is allowed in the Apple app store, given its now-evident porn problems.

One thing’s for sure: In upcoming litigation in Delaware, Twitter is suing Elon Musk to force him to buy the company at the pre-Tech bust price. That could turn out a number of ways. But the recent revelations about woeful security lapses, along with child porn, are making Twitter look more and more like a dumpster fire — something no one wants to buy.

Now here’s the oddest part of the story: Twitter is by no means averse to censorship as such. Just for example,

➤ During the pandemic, Twitter attached warning labels to — or suspended — a number of users who questioned government COVID-19 claims and policies. That may have been due to social pressure from the White House. But often, the users were medical professionals citing research findings. In the aftermath, it’s become increasingly evident that much government policy deserved the hard questions from professionals.

➤ A leading University of Toronto psychiatrist, Ray Blanchard, was temporarily suspended in 2019 for tweeting a cautious view of teen transgender surgery. “Blanchard’s views likely strike most people as considered, compassionate and reasoned… Yet to the transgender activists who police speech on Twitter his thoughts constitute hate, and Twitter agreed.” (C2C Journal, November 18, 2019) With or without government pressure, Twitter employees may consider Woke activists to be experts and don’t seem to experience self-doubt when silencing mature professionals speaking from within their disciplines.

➤ In November 2020, Twitter seemed extraordinarily concerned to remove all reference to the story about Hunter Biden’s laptop. Here at Mind Matters News, Jonathan Bartlett tested the waters on that one and concluded “The Wall Street Journal’s Editorial Board published a critical piece pointing out that Twitter’s reasoning for its actions made no sense; it seemed to modify its policies at will: ‘When social-media companies sanction political speech they don’t like, they always point to one policy or another that was supposedly violated. The truth is they are often making up the rules as they go.’” (November 9, 2020) Significantly, just as with COVID-19 censorship, the substance of the censored claims was later quietly substantiated.

➤ Perhaps most significantly, Twitter censored discussion of whether the COVID virus originated in the Level 4 virus research lab in Wuhan, China (the lab leak theory). As science writer Nicholas Wade pointed out in a careful article at City Journal, based on the evidence, the theory is plausible, not a conspiracy claim.

In every case cited above, a reasonable, evidence-based viewpoint was suppressed, as if in response to a demand for censorship by powerful third parties.

Question of the week: Why does no such powerful third party take a similar interest in suppressing child porn?

While we are here, it’s worth reflecting that if Twitter had not been so concerned to censor alternative viewpoints on the other issues listed above, it might have had more corporate energy to deal with the child porn issue. Now, if Newton is right, it even risks trouble with Apple’s app store… to say nothing of its already battered public image.


You may also wish to read: You hate Twitter already? But did you know about the child porn? From a searing report at The Verge, we learn that it’s out of control but executives have just not prioritized the issue. The problem — partly due to out-of-date detection apps — surfaced when Twitter tried to make money by vending adult porn. Elon, Elon, pick up your messages…!


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Twitter’s Censorship — Child Porn (Shrug… ), MDs’ Doubts: NO!