Now that he is the owner of Twitter, what should Elon Musk’s primary focus be there?
Reinstating the profiles of well-known Twitter users who had their accounts suspended for breaking the site’s terms of service, including former President Donald Trump? revealing the algorithms that decide whether to promote or de-promote a specific tweet or account ensuring that users may post controversial opinions without worrying that they’ll be banned just because they’re controversial?
Stopping the sexual exploitation of children seems good, right?
That is “Priority #1” for the site, Musk himself stated in a tweet.
Elon Musk has begun addressing the issue of posting child sexual exploitation content on Twitter after years of the platform’s inactivity on the subject under past management #Twitter https://t.co/vTiQFMe8i3
— Ξva Fox 🦊Claudius Nero’s Legion 🐺 (@EvaFoxU) November 21, 2022
Musk was responding to a tweet from Eva Fox, who had written an article for Tesmanian, an online news source that covers stories about the numerous businesses Musk controls, discussing Twitter’s initiatives to police itself under Musk’s direction.
Fox spoke with human trafficking survivor and current victim advocate Eliza Bleu. Despite a decade of requests from campaigners, Twitter “has not actually done anything meaningful to combat” child sexual exploitation on the platform, according to Bleu, who spoke to Fox.
Less than 90,000 of the more than 29 million “electronic service provider” reports to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children CyberTipline in 2021, according to Bleu in a May Op-Ed: I think the figure ought to and could be higher.
In September, Fox reported on a study that revealed: “that pornography, including child pornography, continues to be posted on Twitter, while the users behind these accounts, using simple methods, bypass restrictions on their activities by continuing to publish content, in which children are sexually exploited.”
Despite difficulties earlier this year, things quickly started to shift once Musk joined the helm.
“Thanks to the efforts of Eliza and those who supported her, in February 2022, Twitter added a feature to easily report child sexual exploitation material, which was a huge victory in a years-long struggle,” Fox wrote yesterday. “However, a few months later, Twitter ‘took the easy reporting system for minor survivors away,’ [Bleu said]. This was deeply disturbing news, as it is difficult to find a reasonable reason why the ability for platform users to easily report about CSE content has been removed.”
Then, this past weekend, just three weeks after Musk’s purchase of the dominant social media platform was officially completed, Bleu was tweeting about “major” victories in the fight to safeguard kids.
Correction, the THREE biggest hashtags used by child abusers selling child sexual abuse material on Twitter have virtually been eliminated!
This is huge!
— Eliza (@elizableu) November 20, 2022
Musk’s efforts in this area are undoubtedly worthwhile. It would be admirable if this were the only improvement made while he was in charge.
But it does make me wonder: How could the former administration have placed less importance on monitoring political discourse and more on safeguarding defenseless children? Whose world, whose thinking could possibly make sense of that?
More on this story via The Western Journal