December 8, 2023

Twitter went from tagging National Public Radio as “state-affiliated broadcasting” to “government-funded media,” but NPR decided to leave Twitter in a huff because Twitter was damaging its so-called image of “editorial independence.” They like to think they are a herd of independent minds, but they sound like National Public Relations for Democrats. Or National Press Release.

Managing Editor Curtis Houck joins the show to discuss his piece about the NPR freakout and their “mind-numbing egotism.” NPR media reporter David Folkenflik even located other liberal-media groups to suggest Elon Musk was “endangering journalists” by identifying Public Radio as ….Publicly Funded. 

Fears that Twitter label could endanger journalists

Journalism and freedom-of-speech groups have condemned Twitter’s labels, including PEN, the Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press and the Committee to Protect Journalists.

Put aside for a moment that “freedom-of-speech groups” like PEN have lobbied social-media companies to censor “hate and harassment,” including “warnings, strikes, nudges, temporary functionality limitations, and suspensions, as well as content takedowns and account bans.”

PBS has yet to leave Twitter, despite getting the same “Government-Funded Media” tag. Instead, they posted a preposterous line underneath on their Twitter page: “PBS’s editorial independence is central to our work, and will never change. We produce trustworthy content that features unbiased reporting.” That should come with a laugh track. Clay Waters recently showed the PBS NewsHour guest list tilted almost four-to-one liberal-Democrat. 

Enjoy the podcast below or wherever you listen to podcasts. Always feel free to drop a note to NPR Public Editor Kelly McBride, who told Brian Stelter in 2021 that conservative criticism of NPR is “disingenuous.”