Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez has lashed out at the billionaire for suspending journalists from Twitter U.S. Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez. © Michael Brochstein/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images
Democratic Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, commonly referred to as AOC, has joined the backlash against Elon Musk after Twitter suspended several journalists for allegedly violating the platform’s anti-doxxing policies while reporting on the ElonJet flight tracker.
AOC accused Musk of abusing his power as the new owner of Twitter and told him to “lay off the proto-fascism.” That was after he temporarily suspended half-a-dozen journalists from CNN, the New York Times, and The Washington Post, among others, for reporting on and providing the links to ElonJet – a flight tracker that posted real-time flight data about Musk’s private jet.
Musk had accused the journalists of sharing information that was “basically assassination coordinates” and cited Twitter’s terms of service, which prohibit doxxing – publishing the personal information and real-time coordinates of other people.
In a series of Twitter posts on Friday, Cortez insisted that Musk should not have suspended the reporters because he was “a public figure,” suggesting that being the victim of such location information-sharing comes with the territory.
Twitter blocks journalists reporting on ElonJet flight tracker
“You’re a public figure. An extremely controversial and powerful one,” AOC wrote. “I get feeling unsafe, but descending into abuse of power + erratically banning journalists only increases the intensity around you.”
“Take a beat and lay off the proto-fascism. Maybe try putting down your phone,” the New York congresswoman suggested.
Musk brushed off AOC’s criticism by simply replying: “You first.”
The billionaire had previously stated that he was fine with any criticism coming his way over his handling of Twitter, which he purchased in late October for $44 billion, but insisted that threatening the safety of his family was over the line.
“Criticizing me all day long is totally fine, but doxxing my real-time location and endangering my family is not,” he wrote. (RT)