The FBI responded to one of the latest “Twitter Files” drop Wednesday, December 21, saying that their collaboration with Twitter to suppress speech from users for “misinformation” and “foreign influence” was business as usual.
The comments came after independent journalist Michael Shellenberger released part seven of the “Twitter Files,” which are internal revelations provided by Elon Musk since taking over the company. The files showed how the FBI collaborated with Twitter to censor the Hunter Biden laptop story.
“The correspondence between the FBI and Twitter show nothing more than examples of our traditional, longstanding and ongoing federal government and private sector engagements, which involve numerous companies over multiple sectors and industries,” the FBI said in a statement to The New York Post.
The statement continued to say that the agency provides “critical information” to the private sector to “protect themselves and their customers.”
“The men and women of the FBI work every day to protect the American public,” the statement concluded. “It is unfortunate that conspiracy theorists and others are feeding the American public misinformation with the sole purpose of attempting to discredit the agency.”
Shellengberger documents the sequence of events of the scandal.
J.P. Mac Isaac, a computer store owner, had informed the FBI of the laptop that Hunter Biden left in his possession. The FBI issues a subpoena and takes the laptop shortly after, leaving Mac Isaac without any more information.
When the FBI learned that the Post was going to run a story about what was found within the laptop, Mac Isaac received an email from Hunter Biden’s lawyer.
FBI Special Agent Elvis Chan reportedly sent 10 emails to Twitter’s then-Head of Site Integrity, Yoel Roth, telling the team to download 10 documents from a “Teleprompter link.” The Post published the story the next day and, within hours, Twitter and other social media platforms censored the story, citing “hacked materials.”
Roth has since given sworn testimony that the feds had briefed him that any reports on what was in the laptop is a “Russian ‘hack and leak’ operation” designed to discredit then-Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden.
Independent Matt Taibbi, who Musk also tapped to reveal the Twitter files, criticized the FBI’s focus on censoring information over criminal activity.
“Instead of chasing child sex predators or terrorists,” Taibbi tweeted, “the FBI has agents—lots of them—analyzing and mass-flagging social media posts. Not as part of any criminal investigation, but as a permanent, end-in-itself surveillance operation. People should not be okay with this.”