Employees Who Don’t Know What ‘Free Speech’ Means: The Top Moments from Twitter’s All-Hands Meeting on Musk

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Brendan Smialowski/AFP/Getty Images

James O’Keefe’s Project Veritas recently released leaked audio of an internal all-hands meeting at Twitter following Tesla CEO Elon Musk’s successful takeover bid for the company, here are some of the most notable moments from the meeting.

In leaked internal recordings, Project Veritas revealed Twitter employee reactions to Tesla CEO Elon Musk’s company takeover at an all-hands company meeting. The meeting reportedly lasted around 45 minutes; employees questioned board member Bret Taylor and CEO Para Agrawal about the future of the company and Musk’s motives for purchasing the platform.

During the meeting, Twitter CEO Parag Agrawal stated: “Twitter is at its best when all diverse voices in the world feel safe and feel encouraged to engage in the public conversation. That belief is what drives us to have a diverse workforce internally on all dimensions, to have multiple perspectives and points of view represented internally so that we can empathize with all of our customers all around the world and serve them in the best possible way. That is a core belief of mine. That doesn’t change.”

Of course, this view from Agrawal appears to be at direct odds with the number of conservative voices censored on the platform for making statements such as someone born a biological man is a man, or simply quoting Shakespeare. Agrawal famously sneered at the First Amendment in comments before becoming the short-lived boss of the platform.

Here are some of the most interesting exchanges between employees and management from the audio:

What is free speech?

During the meeting, Twitter CMO Leslie Berland asked Agrawal a baffling question: “Is there an updated understanding on what free speech means that we’re aware of?”

Agrawal seemed confused by the question responding: “I think we all understand what free speech means. I don’t think it’s about an updated understanding of that. It’s been a concept that existed for a while but I think I am going to try and read the question behind the question here. Which is: where might Twitter’s product go as a private company in the future once this deal closes?”

Agrawal then said that in order to gain perspective the company will bring in Elon Musk for a Q and A with staff and spend time with him to “understand better what his vision for the future of Twitter might look like.”

Musk’s “questionable ethics”

Beland later asked Taylor: “How did the board, and this goes back to attrition, how did the board and Mr. Musk plan on dealing with a mass exodus considering that acquisition is by a person with questionable ethics? Also, how much input given background did Jack [Dorsey] have on this?”

Taylor responded that Dorsey was part of the Twitter board and supported the acquisition vote but will share his thoughts in his own time. In relation to attrition, Taylor stated: “As Parag stated, one of the themes of today is continuity, and ensuring that Parag and this leadership team continues to operate the business successfully on behalf of our users and behalf of our customers.”

He added: “That has obviously been a big topic of discussion at the board, and as I mentioned, an area that is important to Elon Musk as well because of the importance of Twitter as a service.”

What will happen to Twitter’s army of censors?

Later in the conversation, Berland questioned Agrawal, stating: “Elon made it clear in public that large part of the reason he bought the platform was because of our moderation policies and disagreements in how we deal with health, something that we place in value ver highly within the company.”

She continued: “This puts Twitter Service and Trust and Safety, as well as anybody who cares about health on the platform in a very difficult position. Can you speak your thoughts on this and how those teams will be supported?”

Agrawal responded that he believes “Twitter’s growth as a service allows for more people to use the product and have a better experience because we are able to make the conversation on Twitter be safe because we are able to eliminate manipulation because we are able to remove spammers. Because we have built tools, processes for people to be able to feel safe and control their experiences.”

Agrawal went on to say that Twitter will continue to refine its moderation and content policies in an effort to “improve the product and the health of the public conversation.”

Lucas Nolan is a reporter for Breitbart News covering issues of free speech and online censorship. Follow him on Twitter @LucasNolan or contact via secure email at the address lucasnolan@protonmail.com


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