Musk Says Twitter Has “No Actual Choice” But Comply With Government Censorship Demands

Following criticism for complying with governments’ censorship demands, Twitter owner Elon Musk said that the platform has “no actual choice” when it comes to such requests. When he announced interest in buying Twitter last year, Musk claimed to be a “free speech absolutist.” He argued that “we have free speech” when “someone you don’t like” is “allowed to say something you don’t like.” At the time, Musk added that under his leadership, Twitter would “be very reluctant to delete things,” shy from permanent bans, and allow all legal speech. In recent weeks, Musk has faced some criticism over the removal of content and accounts at the request of the Turkish government ahead of the elections. On Sunday, columnist Matthew Yglesias tweeted that since Musk took over, Twitter has complied with a majority of censorship demands from governments. Musk responded: “Please point out where we had an actual choice and we will reverse it.” Musk had previously said that Twitter would comply with social media laws around the world even if the laws sometimes contradict his vision for absolute free speech. In a separate tweet last year, he said, “By ‘free speech,’ I simply mean that which matches the law. I am against censorship that goes far beyond the law.” In the last removal request report before Musk took over, Twitter claimed it received over 47,000 removal requests in the last half of 2021, and complied with 51% of the requests. However, even the previous Twitter complied with censorship requests from…Musk Says Twitter Has “No Actual Choice” But Comply With Government Censorship Demands