Since Elon Musk bought Twitter with a pledge to restore free speech protections, the media and political establishment have maintained an unrelenting campaign to use pressure from corporations and foreign governments to force him to restore censorship policies. Reporters have covered seemingly every celebrity declaring that they are leaving the site or even selling their Teslas in protest. As companies joined the boycott, commentators gleefully announced the “death,” “collapse,” and “demise” of the social media company with some mocking Musk risking billions of dollars for free speech principles. New figures, however, appear to show that the public is solidly with Musk on the free speech issue. New signups at Twitter are at an all-time high with two million new signups per day.
As these companies and activists demand censorship, customers are signing up in mass to embrace the greater diversity of viewpoints and expression at the company. While companies are yielding to demands from the left that they cut off ad revenue until Musk restores censorship, users are flocking to the site.
The over two million new sign-ups per day represent a 66% increase over the same time frame last year, according to figures released by Musk.
Of course, it has long been known that the public wants more, not less, free speech. It is the political establishment that is struggling to retain control over speech on social media at any cost. Facebook even tried a massive commercial campaign to convince the public to embrace censorship.
President Joe Biden has led calls for censorship on social media, which have been largely heeded by companies like Facebook and Twitter. Biden is accusing Twitter of “spewing lies all across the world” by seeking to reduce one of the largest censorship systems in history.
President Biden has previously accused social media companies of “killing people” by refusing to impose robust censorship over a wide range of subjects. Many of those banned or censored were doctors with opposing views on the data and the science related to the pandemic.
Some of those doctors were the co-authors of the Great Barrington Declaration, which advocated for a more focused Covid response that targeted the most vulnerable population rather than widespread lockdowns and mandates. Many are now questioning the efficacy and cost of the massive lockdown as well as the real value of masks or the rejection of natural immunities as an alternative to vaccination. Likewise, those who alleged that the virus may have begun in a lab in China were widely denounced and the views barred from being uttered on social media platforms. It was later learned that a number of leading experts raised this theory with Fauci and others early in the pandemic.
We are now seeing increasing evidence of back channels used by government and political figures to maintain a censorship system by surrogate in the social media companies and foreign allies.
President Biden however, has denounced Musk as a guy who “goes out and buys an outfit that spews lies all across the world.” He then claimed “There are no editors anymore. There are no editors anymore.”
The President added:
“How do people know the truth? What do they — how do they make — make a distinction between fact and fiction? There’s so much — so much going on. And we’re in the middle of this.”
Indeed, perish the thought that citizens might be left to pursue the truth on their own without the government or surrogates in the media framing it for them. How could we possibly “know the truth” without our social media overlords?
Apparently, millions each day are signing up to do precisely that.