Since Elon Musk acquired Twitter, he has implemented policies meant to increase freedom of speech on the platform while posting a few jabs at his critics along the way.
One such tweet called out the mainstream media’s outrage over his approach, which critics say will lead to a spike in hate speech among users.
Musk posted a screenshot of a CNN broadcast with an altered chyron declaring: “Elon Musk could threaten free speech on Twitter by allowing people to speak freely.”
The cable news network seemed to take the joke seriously and responded with a tweet of its own that confirmed the meme was not authentic. Alongside a censored image of Musk’s original tweet, the network wrote: “This headline never appeared on CNN. Be Better.”
For his part, Musk did not try to hide his reaction to the CNN fact check.
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) November 28, 2022
Reuters correspondent Andrea Shalal further demonstrated the mainstream media’s apparent bias against Musk’s free-speech objective during a recent White House press conference.
She asked White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre what the Biden administration is doing to ensure “that Twitter does not become a vector of information.”
In response, Jean-Pierre confirmed that the administration will be “keeping a close eye” on the social media site.
“But again, social media companies have a responsibility to prevent their platforms from being used by any user to incite violence especially violence directed at individual communities as we have been seeing and the president has been very clear on calling that out,” she added. “He’ll continue to do that, and we’re going to continue to monitor the situation.”
“These are the words of a regime,” tweeted former CIA officer Bryan Dean Wright. “Not a republic.”
Musk also took note of the exchange in a tweet.
“Why are so many in the media against free speech?” he asked. “This is messed up.”
A number of like-minded critics similarly denounced the media’s opposition to Twitter’s current trajectory.
“Their worldview doesn’t rely on truth,” conservative columnist Buzz Patterson wrote in response to Musk’s tweet. “It relies on emotion and truth interferes with that. Freedom of speech interferes with them controlling the narrative. And here you are to flip that.”
Even some public officials weighed in on the developing trend, including U.S. Rep. Byron Donalds (R-FL), who tweeted: “The media loves freedom of the press, but free speech opens the door for the media to be challenged.”