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Twitter’s algorithms for political censorship target language and images — such as “America” and the American flag — associated with Breitbart News’s audience, said Project Veritas President James O’Keefe on Monday.
O’Keefe’s remarks on Twitter came during a SiriusXM Breitbart News Tonight interview with Breitbart News’s Senior Editors-at-Large Rebecca Mansour and Joel Pollak.
Censorial algorithms at Twitter, said O’Keefe, associate certain terms and sentiments with automated behaviors in an ostensible effort to silence bots across the platform: “[Twitter has] an algorithm that finds correlative words associated with people like the Breitbart audience. So if you post about guns, if you like the American flag, if you use the word ‘America,’ if you are a self-described ‘redneck,’ they actually target these people. These are not racists, or white supremacists, or Nazis — these are just moderate conservative ideas.”
Following 2016’s presidential election, Twitter deployed a political censorship campaign ostensibly dedicated to combating “fake news” it implied was responsible for the election of Donald Trump to the presidency.
Twitter surveils and monetizes — through automated probing and employee monitoring — information within direct messages sent by its users across its platform, said O’Keefe: “They’re sharing your girlfriends’ [and] wives’ private pictures you give, you know, people send direct messages on Twitter thinking they’re private, it’s actually not. They can store it in a database, and these engineers are bragging about selling it to advertisers, looking at them, sharing them with your exes and [others].”
O’Keefe commented on Twitter’s use of shadow banning and assorted measures to minimize targeted users’ engagement across its platform:
They have hundreds of engineers that mine through your private part pictures … That shadow banning video we released Thursday was probably one of the greatest censorship stories we’ve ever seen. This is the digital town square, and if they’re able to prevent you from sharing your information with your followers and friends, then how are you going to communicate your ideas? They’re trying to “ban a way of talking,” they say.
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