Science, Technology, and Social Media

Jack Dorsey Says He Was ‘Surprised’ By Twitter Files Revelations

Twitter founder and former CEO Jack Dorsey said he was unaware of much of the content revealed in the Twitter Files — internal company documents relating to content moderation — in an interview on Monday with Breaking Points.

Dorsey had faith in his employees to take the correct actions, and he did not know much of the communication shown in the Twitter Files, he said in the interview, adding that he was shocked by the extent of government involvement and the appeals they made to the company. The Twitter Files showed government agencies and other entities making requests to employees to censor content and ban certain individuals. 

“My leadership style in the company was just to trust our folks and that they were doing the right things,” he said.

“There was a lot of stuff in the Twitter Files that I never saw because it wasn’t at that level,” Dorsey continued. “And I was surprised by the level of the engagement with government agencies, I was surprised by the requests. But if you look at our team members, they pushed back on a lot of that stuff. Not all of it, but a lot of it was questionable.”

One example of this was when Democratic California Rep. Adam Schiff’s office asked Twitter to ban journalist Paul Sperry, according to an email published by Matt Taibbi, one of the journalists tasked with the Twitter Files. The email claims the platform should ban him because of “alleged harassment from Qanon conspiracists,” but Twitter denied the request.

Dorsey said his employees mostly handled requests properly, but also expressed some regret about his leadership style. He stepped down as Twitter CEO in November 2021.

“I think they acted with fairness, I think they generally did the right thing,” he said. “Of course we made a bunch of mistakes, especially around the New York Post and the Hunter Biden laptop story.”

“I wish in retrospect I was a little more hands-on in that area,” Dorsey stated.

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Jason Cohen

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