Elon Musk Changes X Policy to Protect Antisemitic Cartoonist

Elon Musk’s X has updated its privacy policy to prohibit users from publicly revealing the real names or identities of anonymous account holders without their consent. 

This change would’ve been less suspect, but it comes after some X users allegedly unmasked the identity of an anonymous cartoonist known as “Stonetoss,” who has faced criticism for creating antisemitic and transphobic content.

The new policy states that users “cannot share … the identity of an anonymous user, such as their name or media depicting them.” X claims this measure is aimed at maintaining a “safe and secure platform.” However, the decision has sparked mixed reactions from users and critics.

While the policy could potentially protect anonymous dissidents and whistleblowers in repressive regimes, concerns have been raised about Musk’s motivations and the selective enforcement of rules. 

Critics accuse Musk of defending neo-Nazis, antisemites, and white supremacists on the platform, pointing to his embrace of antisemitic conspiracy theories and the reinstatement of previously suspended accounts.

The policy change also contradicts Musk’s claims of upholding free speech on X. Journalists have traditionally played a crucial role in unmasking public figures who seek anonymity, and Musk has faced backlash for suspending journalists and filing lawsuits against his critics while proclaiming X as a bastion of free expression.

Worse, according to an earlier report by Wired, the new policy follows the suspension of accounts of journalists and researchers who shared the post from the antifascist research group Anonymous Comrades Collective revealing Stonetoss’s identity after the neo-Nazi cartoonist appealed to Musk.

Via KnowYourMeme

“If Elon’s idea of a ‘free speech’ website is one where people can be intimidated into silence, the outcome will be a site where the Stasi will drive out all dissent,” Stonetoss wrote, and also offered a list of people to suspend.

The Anonymous Comrades Collective account that posted the thread was later suspended while the thread revealing Stonetoss’s identity was deleted. Accounts of dozens of other users, including researchers and journalists that engaged in the conversation, were suspended and told to delete their posts about Stonetoss to have their accounts reinstated.

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