Twitter's New Rule on Posting Images and Videos Is Exactly What Rioters Want

Posted: Nov 30, 2021 4:15 PM
Twitter's New Rule on Posting Images and Videos Is Exactly What Rioters Want

Source: AP Photo/John Minchillo

It took only one day for Twitter to announce new rules for the platform regarding posting images and video after founder and CEO Jack Dorsey resigned on Monday. 

Updating its privacy policy, Twitter stated, "We will not allow the sharing of private media, such as images or videos of private individuals without their consent. Publishing people's private info is also prohibited under the policy, as is threatening or incentivizing others to do so." 

The tweet announcing the update was up for a few hours, sparking a lot of backlash before the social media giant tried to do damage control, claiming it is meant to protect "women, activists, dissidents, and members of minority communities." 

So what does this exactly mean when it comes to covering people gathered in public spaces during, let's say, a riot? Well, the rule change is not really clear. And that is what makes it so concerning. 

Time and again, whenever I covered a Black Lives Matter or Antifa riot, people online would tell me to delete the video or photo to prevent their comrades from being identified by law enforcement, even as there are other cameras recording the people in question brazenly committing crimes out in the open. Using Twitter during last year's riots was key to my job here at Townhall. It's a tool that is effective in getting out accurate information in a chaotic situation in real-time. 

Even Twitter's assurances of postings related to the news are anything but: 

From the outside, it looks like Twitter will be the sole arbiter determining who is a journalist and if what they're covering violates this vague rule. That is disturbing considering Twitter's history of censoring posts that made Democrats look bad, i.e., the New York Post story about Hunter Biden's laptop. 

This rule change is a gift to rioters. If they are rioting on behalf of the "right cause," they can manipulate Twitter to hide their destructive acts. Groups like Antifa will use any excuse to try to hide their cowardly acts, such as attacking small businesses whose only crime is being in their path. I don't know how this will affect future protest and riot coverage, but I will continue to use the platform for as long as I'm able to because that is what Townhall readers deserve. 

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