After purchasing Twitter last year, Elon Musk made good on his promise to release internal documents showing a pattern of censoring certain — mostly conservative — content on the platform.
Although the so-called “Twitter Files” highlighted the troubling practices at that company before Musk’s acquisition, many individuals, including congressional Republicans, continued working to expose similar trends behind the scenes of other social media platforms.
This week, House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jim Jordan (R-OH) offered a string of such evidence as part of what he dubbed the “Facebook Files.”
Musk himself weighed in on Jordan’s revelation with a comment in response to the initial tweet.
Extremely concerning! https://t.co/0zve6dbaQl
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) July 27, 2023
Jordan took to Twitter to chronicle a host of incidents involving seemingly innocuous posts that were reportedly taken down by Meta-owned platforms Facebook and Instagram.
“Never-before-released internal documents subpoenaed by the Judiciary Committee PROVE that Facebook and Instagram censored posts and changed their content moderation policies because of unconstitutional pressure from the Biden White House,” the Ohio Republican wrote.
As in the Twitter Files, internal communications at Facebook seemed to reveal the Biden administration’s effort to censor supposed “misinformation.”
Jordan cited a Facebook employee’s April 2021 email that asserted: “We are facing continued pressure from external stakeholders, including the White House, to remove posts.”
The same month, he wrote that Facebook executive Nick Clegg sent an email to his team that Andy Slavitt, a senior adviser to President Joe Biden, was “outraged” that the platform did not remove a meme critical of the COVID-19 vaccine.
“When Clegg ‘countered that removing content like that would represent a significant incursion into traditional boundaries of free expression in the US,’ Slavitt disregarded the warning and the First Amendment,” Jordan wrote.
Instead of standing up for freedom of expression, however, Jordan’s Twitter thread appeared to reveal that Facebook began granting the White House’s requests for increased censorship.
Furthermore, the lawmaker asserted that Facebook only released the damning documents after his committee confirmed its plans to hold Zuckerberg in contempt.
“These documents, AND OTHERS that were just produced to the Committee, prove that the Biden Admin abused its powers to coerce Facebook into censoring Americans, preventing free and open discourse on issues of critical public importance,” he added.