Elon Musk’s Twitter Makes Tens of millions Off Anti-LGBT “Groomer” Tweets: Report

Beneath Elon Musk’s management of Twitter, tweets linking LGBT individuals to “grooming” have sky-rocketed, leaping 119 p.c since Musk’s takeover in October 2022, in keeping with a brand new report launched by the Middle For Countering Digital Hate (CCDH).

The examine additionally discovered that Twitter is making hundreds of thousands from big-name advertisers, whose manufacturers are showing alongside hateful anti-LGBT rhetoric.

“Tolerance of this content material is a part of Elon Musk’s enterprise mannequin,” stated Callum Hood, a CCDH researcher who helped write the brand new examine. ““There’s actual world stuff occurring now that seems to be a results of this rhetoric on-line.”

The examine examined 5 high-profile Twitter accounts answerable for persistently linking LGBT to “grooming,” together with Libs Of TikTok, the account run by Chaya Raichik; Gays Towards Groomers, run by Jaimee Michell; right-wing commentator Christhoper Rufo; YouTuber Tim Pool; and James Lindsay, identified for the phrase “Okay, Groomer.”

These 5 accounts alone are set to generate $6.4 million a yr in promoting income for Twitter, CCDH researchers estimated. They discovered advertisements from big-name firms like Disney, T-Cell, Kindle, and the NBA appeared subsequent to explicitly anti-LGBT “groomer” tweets on these accounts, in keeping with the report.

“An indifference to the rights of marginalized communities is converging with a ruthless drive for revenue in actual time,” Imran Ahmed, the chief government of the CCDH stated in a press release, “Twitter should resolve in the event that they imagine within the basic rights and freedoms of LGBTQ+ individuals, or in the event that they need to proceed cashing in on and normalizing hate. They can’t do each.”

During the last three years, far-right commentators and anti-LGBT activists have amplified a “grooming” narrative, which falsely suggests LGBT persons are pedophiles and accuses them of “grooming” kids for abuse. The “grooming” narrative has grow to be a right-wing touchstone, animating campaigns to ban LGBT books from libraries, move anti-trans laws aimed toward minors, and protest drag reveals.

Lindsay was beforehand banned from Twitter in August 2022. In his ultimate tweet, Lindsay referred to as Alejandra Caraballo, an teacher at Harvard Legislation College Cyberlaw Clinic who makes a speciality of LGBTQ civil rights litigation, a “little one sexualization specialist.” Lindsay’s account was then reinstated underneath Elon Musk.

For her half, Raichik has referred to as LGBT rights a “cult and it’s so charming,” in an look on Tucker Carlson in December final yr, “They’re simply evil individuals they usually need to groom youngsters. They’re recruiting.”

The CCDH researchers additionally discovered that the quantity of tweets containing the “grooming narrative” spiked round specific occasions, such because the lethal taking pictures at LGBT Membership Q in Colorado Springs in November final yr, which left 5 individuals lifeless.

After the taking pictures, Nic Grzecka, the proprietor of Membership Q, stated he believed the anti-LGBT “groomer” narrative was a part of the rationale for the assault.

“Mendacity about our neighborhood, and making them into one thing they aren’t, creates a distinct sort of hate,” Grzecka stated.

A month later, Elon Musk publicly attacked a former Twitter worker, Yoel Roth, suggesting he had as soon as advocated for the sexualization of youngsters. Roth, who’s homosexual, was pressured to flee his dwelling, dealing with a barrage of harassment and on-line accusations that he was a “groomer.” The incident coincided with one other spike in tweets about “grooming,” ‘CCDH researchers discovered.

Shortly after his takeover, Musk wrote an open letter to jittery advertisers, in search of to reassure them that he could be keen to curb hate speech on the platform. Musk stated he purchased the corporate as a result of it’s a place the place “a variety of beliefs could be debated in a wholesome method,” and promised he wouldn’t permit the location to grow to be “free-for-all hellscape, the place something could be stated with no penalties.”

Researchers on the CCDH say their new report reveals Musk hasn’t saved his phrase.

“Musk has not saved his guarantees on hate and which means he’s not conserving his guarantees to advertisers both,” says Hood, an creator of the CCDH’s new report. “The choices that he’s taking personally appear to be calculated with one aim in thoughts: boosting person visits.”

This week, Musk revealed in a company-wide e mail that he now values Twitter at $20 billion, lower than half what he paid for it in 2022.