Social Media

Elon Musk Warns Tucker Carlson: The Feds Are in Your Twitter DMs

The feds invoke national security to take away more of your rights and pretend they're keeping you safe.


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Who's that sliding into your Twitter DMs? Is it the federal government? Well, according to Elon Musk, who took over the social media platform last year, government bureaucrats were routinely taking a close look at users' content.

Thanks to the Twitter Files, a collaboration between Elon Musk and independent journalists, as well as the Facebook Files, my own investigative project for Reason, we now know that social media companies constantly faced pressure to censor speech—and that pressure was coming from the government. The State Department, the Department of Homeland Security, the FBI, and even the White House all targeted legitimate online speech. Federal law enforcement agents flagged tweets and posts for deletion under the guise of protecting national security.

And no one should be surprised. The feds love to invoke national security, and then take away more of your rights and pretend they're keeping you safe.

Well, guess what: They're at it again. Following a massive leak of U.S. intelligence documents that were posted on Discord, another social media platform, the Biden administration wants more power to monitor online chat rooms.

A senior administration official told NBC News that the government "is now looking at expanding the universe of online sites that intelligence agencies and law enforcement authorities track."

That's bad. We know where it will lead: More government surveillance of the American people, and eventually, more censorship of political speech. In the runup to the 2020 election, for example, the FBI warned social media sites to be wary of Russian-based disinformation. But then they also started flagging joke tweets written by Americans that happened to be about the election. 

You see, the feds just can't help themselves: They'll use the new powers we give them to pressure the internet to shut down dissent. We've seen it happen time and again. 

So let's keep the government out of our chatrooms. And watch out for your DMs.

Photos: Javier Rojas/ZUMAPRESS/Newscom; Michael Ho Wai Lee/ZUMAPRESS/Newscom; BOB STRONG/UPI/Newscom; Graeme Sloan/Sipa USA/Newscom

Music: "New Car—Instrumental" by Rex Banner via Artlist