Twitter released a policy stating that it would restrict and remove content that would “place people at a higher risk of transmitting COVID-19.” But while some articles are left up, other articles from conservative outlets receive the ban hammer.
Conservative news outlet The Federalist was locked out of its Twitter account on March 26, 2020, for a piece written by dermatologist Douglas A. Perednia. The Federalist removed the tweet from its Twitter account in compliance with the request from Twitter. Account access was then restored.
That's not how Twitter treated state-sponsored disinformation from China. The platform also ignored tweets that potentially violated its rules, if they came from liberal outlets.
Tweets that even liberal Buzzfeed has called “Conspiracy Theories That The Coronavirus Didn’t Originate In China” have been allowed to circulate on Twitter. Spokesperson & Deputy Director-General, Information Department, Foreign Ministry of China Lijian Zhao has tweeted that “It might be US army who brought the epidemic to Wuhan.”
The piece from The Federalist was introduced on Twitter with the caption “time to think outside the box.” It did not disagree with the current method of avoiding the virus but offered a third potential strategy: “controlled voluntary infection” (CVI).
Perednia wrote, “CVI involves allowing people at low risk for severe complications to deliberately contract COVID-19 in a socially and medically responsible way so they become immune to the disease. People who are immune cannot pass on the disease to others.”
A Twitter spokesperson told the Media Research Center, “The account was temporarily locked for violating the Twitter Rules regarding COVID-19.”