Sunday, June 16, 2024

Viral Video: You just lied, Musk tells BBC journalist

Twitter CEO Elon Musk accused a BBC journalist of lying when the latter failed to cite examples of hate speech being allowed on the social media platform.

In a wide-ranging interview, the BBC journalist asked Musk how he planned to tackle incidents of hate speech being reported on Twitter amid claims of staff shortage to police hateful content. When Musk asked the journalist to cite some examples of hate speech on Twitter, he declined to do so.

“What hate speech are you talking about? I mean, you use Twitter. Do you see a rise in hate speech? Just a personal anecdote? I don’t,” Musk said.

“Honestly, I don’t. I don’t actually use that feed anymore because I just don’t particularly like it,” said the journalist on Twitter’s ‘For You’ feature. “And actually a lot of people are quite similar. I only look at my followers.”

“I’m asking for one example and you can’t give a single one. Then I say, sir, that you don’t know what you are talking about. You cannot give me a single example of hateful content, not even one tweet. And yet you claimed that hateful content was high. That is false, you just lied,” Musk replied.

Twitter recently labelled the BBC as a “government-funded media”,  leading to a sharp reaction from the British public broadcaster. 

“The BBC is, and always has been, independent. We are funded by the British public through the licence fee,” a statement from the BBC read.

On Wednesday, Musk said on Twitter Spaces, that he did not know “what exactly happened” when content related to a BBC documentary critical of Prime Minister Narendra Modi was taken down from the microblogging site. 

“I am not aware of this particular situation… don’t know what exactly happened with some content situation in India,” Musk said. “The rules in India for what can appear on social media are quite strict and we can’t go beyond the laws of the country.”

The government had asked Twitter to take down over 50 tweets carrying links to the BBC documentary on PM Modi.

“If we have a choice of either our people go to prison or we comply with the laws, we will comply with the laws…” Musk said.

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