The personal Twitter account of investigative journalist James O’Keefe, the founder and CEO of Project Veritas, received a permanent ban on Thursday.
The move, like many recent censorship attacks on conservatives, appeared to be suspiciously timed in coordination with a bombshell series of hidden-camera reports exposing a high-level CNN staffer’s admissions that the network knowingly spread blatant anti-conservative “propaganda.”
In response to the effort to suppress him, O’Keefe pushed back, letting Twitter know that he soon planned to file defamation lawsuits over the social-media publisher’s false claims that he “operated fake accounts.”
BREAKING: James O’Keefe announces he is suing Twitter pic.twitter.com/UD44YoTbv5
— Jack Posobiec (@JackPosobiec) April 15, 2021
“Section 230 may have protected them before, but it will not protect them from me,” O’Keefe said, referencing the controversial statute within the Communications Decency Act that extends broad protections to online platforms that publish user-generated content with minimum curation.
O’Keefe said the complaint would be filed Monday.
While he’s no stranger to being on the giving and receiving end of such lawsuits, one potential problem might arise if the allegation from Twitter came only in a private email to him, as O’Keefe seemed to indicate on his website.
The apparent form response from Twitter Support accused him of “violating the Twitter Rules on platform manipulation and spam.”
It went on to claim that he was maintaining other accounts under pseudonyms.
“You can’t mislead others on Twitter by operating fake accounts,” it said, and “you can’t artificially amplify or disrupt conversations through the use of multiple accounts.”
Regardless, many outrage conservatives took to—where else?—Twitter to condemn the latest affront, according to Twitchy.
Of course they did. Who wants to know the truth?
— Eduardo Cavendish (@ducavendish) April 15, 2021
Whether he files suit or not, O’Keefe’s ban could prove to be a rallying cry for fed-up conservatives who are still on the site.
Many already initiated social-media boycotts when tech companies attempted to suppress then-President Donald Trump in the wake of a Jan. 6 uprising at the US Capitol.
The Internet Accountability Project issued a statement about the O’Keefe ban calling on politicians to take decisive action.
“Just as the Founders put an end to government censorship, today’s Congress must put an end to censorship from Big Tech and Big Media,” said Mike Davis, IAP founder and president.
“They can start by ending their antitrust amnesty and Section 230 immunity,” Davis said. “Today, it’s James O’Keefe and his news organization. Tomorrow, it’s you and your favorite news organization.”
However, newly emboldened Democrats, fresh off what many believe to be an audacious theft of the 2020 election with more power-grabs in sight, are unlikely to take the bait.
CNN and other brazenly leftist media outlets that promote disinformation have been a large part of the problem.
The most recent Project Veritas release featured CNN Technical Director Charlie Chester admitting that the network targeted Trump and other conservatives, including Rep. Matt Gaetz, R-Fla., due to an ideological agenda.
“Look what we did, we got Trump out,” Chester boasted to the undercover journalist, who he reportedly believed was a Tinder date.
“I am 100% going to say it, and I 100% believe that if it wasn’t for CNN, I don’t know that Trump would have got voted out,” he continued. “…I came to CNN because I wanted to be a part of that.”
O’Keefe told Fox News that the story, which trended on Twitter, was some of the watchdog organization’s most important work to date.
“It’s probably the biggest story by implication,” he said, according to Reclaim the Net.
“What it represents—this guy, a director at CNN…he’s admitting the network is propaganda,” O’Keefe continued. “… I just want them to be honest; he’s not being honest.”