New Twitter CEO’s First Decision: Ban Mean Memes

One day after brand new Twitter CEO Parag ‘Not Bound by the First Amendment” Agrawal took the helm, the company announced that it will no longer allow people to share ‘images or videos of private individuals without their consent’ due to “growing concerns about the misuse of media and information” to “harass, intimidate, and reveal the identities of individuals.”

We assume this includes photos of protesters rioters, people looting a Louis Vuitton store, the driver of an SUV plowing into a crowd of people, and viral memes which include non-public figures.

In a Tuesday blog post, the company wrote:

“There are growing concerns about the misuse of media and information that is not available elsewhere online as a tool to harass, intimidate, and reveal the identities of individuals. Sharing personal media, such as images or videos, can potentially violate a person’s privacy, and may lead to emotional or physical harm. The misuse of private media can affect everyone, but can have a disproportionate effect on women, activists, dissidents, and members of minority communities. When we receive a report that a Tweet contains unauthorized private media, we will now take action in line with our range of enforcement options.”

What is in violation of this policy?
Under our private information policy, you can’t share the following types of private information or media, without the permission of the person who it belongs to:

  • home address or physical location information, including street addresses, GPS coordinates or other identifying information related to locations that are considered private;
  • identity documents, including government-issued IDs and social security or other national identity numbers – note: we may make limited exceptions in regions where this information is not considered to be private;
  • contact information, including non-public personal phone numbers or email addresses; 
  • financial account information, including bank account and credit card details; and
  • other private information, including biometric data or medical records.
  • NEW: media of private individuals without the permission of the person(s) depicted.

Twitter does provide themselves an ‘out’ – writing that “there are instances where account holders may share images or videos of private individuals in an effort to help someone involved in a crisis situation, such as in the aftermath of a violent event, or as part of a newsworthy event due to public interest value, and this might outweigh the safety risks to a person. “

Who makes that decision, and will the race of the suspect be a factor?

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The DOT’s Twitter Meme Doesn’t Just Offend Comedy… It May Also Be Illegal

It’s a well-known fact that liberalism and comedy aren’t a good mix. Witness Hannah Gadsby. Or most of Saturday Night Live‘s recent output. Or any of the current crop of late-night show hosts.

The same goes for the various departments of the Biden administration. Case in point: this doozy of a meme that the Department of Transportation recently tweeted.

If you don’t get it, it’s okay. There’s nothing to get other than the leftist talking point.

I’m not sure what we’re supposed to call the diametric opposite of comedy gold, but this is it. This meme is an affront to comedy. It’s neither cute nor funny, and it’s certainly not clever. There’s no original thought to it whatsoever, and the only thing revelatory about it is how slavishly devoted the left always is to The Narrative™.

In other words, this in no way resembles comedy.

Whoever developed this meme and posted it on the Department of Transportation’s Twitter account should have his or her password privileges revoked. I almost picture Pete Buttigieg himself sitting in front of his copy of Photoshop smiling smugly and saying to himself, “All my friends are gonna love this!”

As my PJ Media colleague Stacey Lennox so wisely put it, “The left can’t meme. We all know this.”

And don’t get me started on the ridiculous claim that the infrastructure bill and Build Back Better will combine like the Wonder Twins to “create millions of new jobs.” (Besides, one of the Wonder Twins always turned into a bucket of water, which definitely won’t help.)

No government program has lived up to that promise — other than maybe some New Deal stuff — so why would we expect these two legislative winners to do the same?

But it gets better. Or worse, if you’re part of the Biden administration’s DOT.

Some people are accusing the DOT of improperly lobbying with a lame Twitter post. The Twittersphere and others are concerned that the meme may violate the Hatch Act.

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Pfizer’s Attempt at Winning the Meme War Backfires Disastrously

Pharmaceutical giant Pfizer attempted to combat COVID misinformation by posting a meme to Twitter, but the results were predictably disastrous.

The meme featured a blob labeled “science” holding back another figure to prevent it from embracing a bubble called “wild conspiracy theories.”

“It’s easy to get distracted by misinformation these days, but don’t worry… Science has got your back,” Pfizer’s corporate account tweeted.

Mike Cernovich pointed out that Pfizer hasn’t ‘got the back’ of those who have been injured by their vaccines, since the company has obtained a legal waiver meaning nobody can sue them.

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Surgeon general warns against memes, misleading graphs, cherry-picked stats: ‘Health misinformation’

The U.S. surgeon general released a brochure this week warning against misleading memes and graphs online in an effort to stamp out “health misinformation.”

“With the authorization of COVID-19 vaccines for children 5 to 11 years old, it is more important than ever that families have access to accurate, science-based information. Health misinformation is spreading fast and far online and throughout our communities,” Surgeon General Dr. Vivek Murthy said in a press release Tuesday. “The good news is that we all have the power to help stop the spread of health misinformation during this pandemic and beyond. That’s where this toolkit comes in – to provide Americans with resources to help limit and reduce this threat to public health.”  

The Community Toolkit for Addressing Health Misinformation includes a misinformation checklist, tips on how individuals should communicate with loved ones about health matters, an outline of common types of misinformation, and reflections from people who may have encountered misinformation.

“During the COVID-19 pandemic, health misinformation and disinformation (misinformation that is spread intentionally to serve a malicious purpose) have threatened the U.S. response to COVID-19 and continue to prevent Americans from getting vaccinated, prolonging the pandemic and putting lives at risk,” the press release added. 

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Countering cognitive warfare: awareness and resilience

The Alliance faces a range of challenges in emerging domains of conflict. These domains can arise from the introduction of new and disruptive technologies. The domains of space and cyber, for example, came out of developments in rocket, satellite, computing, telecommunications, and internetworking technologies. The increasingly widespread use of social media, social networking, social messaging, and mobile device technologies is now enabling a new domain: cognitive warfare.

In cognitive warfare, the human mind becomes the battlefield. The aim is to change not only what people think, but how they think and act. Waged successfully, it shapes and influences individual and group beliefs and behaviours to favour an aggressor’s tactical or strategic objectives. In its extreme form, it has the potential to fracture and fragment an entire society, so that it no longer has the collective will to resist an adversary’s intentions. An opponent could conceivably subdue a society without resorting to outright force or coercion.

The aims of cognitive warfare can be limited, with short time horizons. Or they can be strategic, with campaigns launched over the course of decades. A single campaign could focus on the limited aim of preventing a military manoeuver from taking place as planned, or to force the alteration of a specific public policy. Several successive campaigns could be launched with the long-term objective of disrupting entire societies or alliances, by seeding doubts about governance, subverting democratic processes, triggering civil disturbances, or instigating separatist movements.

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