Just over two weeks ago, Twitter locked the New York Post’s account after the news outlet shared its explosive findings regarding Hunter Biden’s overseas business dealings and the potential involvement of Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden after they obtained a laptop formerly belonging to the potential future first son.
In the aftermath, Twitter explained its censor first, fact-check later action by arguing there was a “lack of authoritative reporting on the origins of the materials included” in the Post’s articles and that the posts violated its “distribution of hacked materials” policy.
Many onlookers rightfully saw the action for what it was: Blatant censorship of a major U.S. news agency due to their publication of information damaging to the Democratic Party’s candidate.
It has backfired
But now, two weeks later, Twitter’s attempt to silence the New York Post appears to have backfired as interest in the story skyrocketed and the Post’s Twitter account has grown exponentially.
According to the social media data tracker, Social Blade, the Post has gained more than 189,000 Twitter followers since Oct. 14, the day the account was locked. Blaze Media chief executive Tyler Cardon noted that the additions amount to a stunning 10.6% increase in followers over roughly two weeks without creating a single post.
On Oct.13, the day before the story broke and the Post’s account was locked, the news outlet’s primary account boasted 1,777,638 followers. As of Friday at the time of this story’s publication, that number had risen to 1,968,406.
The Post was still unable to post on its account as of Friday as Twitter has said the account would remain locked until the news outlet agreed to remove the posts in question.
Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey appeared before Congress on Wednesday to answer questions from Senate lawmakers about his company’s alleged censorship of conservative voices.
During the testimony, though he has since admitted that blocking the spread of the story on users accounts and in direct messages was wrong, Dorsey stood by his company’s decision to lock the Post’s account. He added that the situation could be rectified, however, if the news outlet would simply delete their original tweets.
“They have to log into their account, which they can do right this minute, delete the original tweet, which fell under our original enforcement action, and they can tweet the exact same material … and it will go through,” he said.
So far, the Post is refusing to kowtow to pressure, and with the massive growth they are seeing as a result of Twitter’s actions against them, that hardly seems like a bad idea.