Records show FBI paid Twitter millions to ban accounts

It has been over a month since Twitter owner Elon Musk began providing journalists with documents showing that the social media giants intervened to help Democrats during the 2020 presidential election.

What’s more, additional revelations put out late last month illustrate how Twitter was effectively being bribed to ban accounts. 

Twitter operated like “a subsidiary” of the FBI

In a thread posted on December 16, reporter Matt Taibbi pointed to internal company communications showing how Twitter acted “as if it were a subsidiary” of the FBI, with contact between the two being “constant and pervasive.”

Taibbi noted that although some discussions were “mundane,” he stressed that “a surprisingly high number are requests by the FBI for Twitter to take action on election misinformation, even involving joke tweets from low-follower accounts.”

What’s more, both the FBI and DHS provided “social media content to Twitter through multiple entry points, pre-flagged for moderation,” with much of the content being conservative-leaning.

Fellow independent journalist Michael Shellenberger stressed in a thread of his own that this work was not being done for free.

He published a company email from February of 2022 which discussed how Twitter had up until that point been paid $3,415,323 since October of 2019.

Rep. Jim Jordan pledges to investigate

Interestingly, Taibbi noted that although federal law enforcement agencies seemed deeply preoccupied with suppressing what they considered to be misinformation, they were far less concerned about what most people would regard as more serious issues.

“Instead of chasing child sex predators or terrorists, the FBI has agents — lots of them — analyzing and mass-flagging social media posts,” he pointed out.

“Not as part of any criminal investigation, but as a permanent, end-in-itself surveillance operation,” he continued, adding, “People should not be okay with this.”

Ohio Republican Rep. Jim Jordan agrees. Jordan, who is expected to become chair of the House Judiciary Committee, told the New York Post that he is planning to conduct an investigation.

“I have concerns about whether the government was running a misinformation operation on We the People,” he said.