Twitter sort of denies allegations of employees reading direct messages

“On Monday, conservative activist and filmmaker James O’Keefe published undercover footage of Twitter engineers alleging the social network has hundreds of employees reading ‘everything you post online’ — including direct messages,” Charlie Warzel reports for BuzzFeed News. “The undercover video shows Twitter engineer Clay Haynes telling a Project Veritas activist that hundreds of employees have seemingly unrestricted access to Twitter users’ private data. ‘There’s teams dedicated to it… at least, three or four hundred people,’ Haynes is heard saying on camera. ‘They’re paid to look at dick pics.'”

“Twitter disputes these claims,” Warzel reports. “‘We do not proactively review DMs. Period,’ a company spokesperson told BuzzFeed News. ‘A limited number of employees have access to such information, for legitimate work purposes, and we enforce strict access protocols for those employees.’ Twitter did not answer questions about the number of employees who have such access or the specifics of precautions it takes to protect sensitive user data.”

“A former senior Twitter employee echoed the company’s comment, observing that the claims in Monday’s Project Veritas video were ‘technically accurate to a degree, but exaggerated for effect by drunk idiots,'” Warzel reports. “Monday’s undercover video was the latest in a series of Project Veritas sting videos aimed at investigating Twitter. Last week, O’Keefe released footage of Twitter engineers alleging the company is ‘more than happy to help the Department of Justice in their little investigation’ by handing over Trump tweets and direct messages. Twitter pushed back hard against the claims last week, noting in a statement that it ‘only responds to valid legal requests, and does not share any user information with law enforcement without such a request.'”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Those who value their privacy certainly don’t use Twitter for anything they’d like to keep private, or at all.

Only fools upload their lives to Twitter, Facebook, and Google while mailing other firms their DNA.

Facebook is giving the US government more and more data – December 21, 2017
Former Facebook exec: Facebook is ‘destroying how society works’ – December 11, 2017
In bid to curtail ‘revenge porn,’ Facebook wants you to send your own nude images via Messenger – November 8, 2017
Apple CEO Tim Cook: Russian Facebook ads didn’t elect President Trump – November 2, 2017
Young people are leaving Facebook – August 22, 2017
If you haven’t already, it’s time to remove Facebook from your life – May 11, 2017
How to delete your online existence, while saving your data – March 1, 2017
Free ‘Data Selfie’ tool reveals how creepy Facebook tracks and studies your activity – February 17, 2017
Facebook begins tracking non-users around the internet – May 27, 2016
Former Facebook workers: We routinely suppressed conservative news – May 9, 2016
FCC won’t force Google and Facebook to stop tracking you – November 6, 2015
European Commission: Don’t use Facebook if you don’t want to be spied on – March 27, 2015
Edward Snowden’s privacy tips: ‘Get rid of Dropbox,” avoid Facebook and Google – October 13, 2014
Tim Berners-Lee: You should own your personal data, not Google, Facebook, Amazon, and advertisers – October 8, 2014
Facebook conducts massive psychology experiment on 700,000 unaware users, and you may have been a guinea pig – June 28, 2014
Why Apple really values your privacy – unlike Google, Facebook, or Amazon – June 25, 2014
U.S. NSA used Facebook to hack into computers – March 12, 2014
How to permanently delete your Facebook account – December 16, 2013
Study finds link between number of Facebook friends and ‘socially disruptive’ narcissism – April 10, 2012


  1. I only follow only one person on Twitter: @applesupport. It was the fastest way for me to get an answer to a problem I had with mail. Otherwise, I would have had to set up an appointment with the Genius bar. That would have taken several days due to how busy the Apple Store is at the Lynnhaven Mall in Virginia Beach.

    1. Twitter can be used in many different ways and many of them are highly valuable. @AppleSupport and @ComcastCares are two examples- you will get faster and better support than by any other method. I get faster response from elected Officials via Twitter as well.
      Beyond that, I follow musicians, authors and journalists that I enjoy and that is a good way to find out when they have new stuff out or are going to be in the area for a concert/speaking engagement.

      The circular bubble of tweeting otherwise is not very valuable or a very good use of time. And @MacDailyNews is out there in the Twitterverse as well.

  2. James O’Keefe is a clown.
    Ambushes people and then very selectively edits the encounter to fit a pre-determined narrative to feed the willfully blind in the GOP Bubble. The Breitbart crowd claims Twitter is censoring them, so Mr O’keefe has made them a cartoon to feed their fantasy.

    Here is the full video of an encounter between said so-called activist and a WaPo real journalist. The WaPo released the full video which you can compare to the heavily and creatively edited version over in GOP land.

    1. True, but more than a clown. James O’Keefe is a liar, using doctored footage to encourage people to believe lies that harm real people.
      I’m not surprised some staff at Twitter can see DMs, since it has long been reported that they respond to law enforcement warrants when they are required to do so by law. It has also long been in the news that they try to resist subpoenas, where the courts allow them to.
      So, O’Keefe took long-known facts and distorted them into lies to hurt his latest target. No surprise, but any reporter who talks about O’Keefe without pointing out “this guy absolutely cannot be trusted” is doing their readers a disservice.

        1. Nice “What about…?” redirect there. It sounds like you are conceding that James O’Keefe is a liar and a fraud, whose intent is to fool people with lies into acting against his targets.
          I don’t see how Michael Moore’s veracity or lack thereof has any relevance to pointing out that any story based on James O’Keefe should begin with “This is probably a lie, since it is being done by James O’Keefe.”
          Michael Moore might be an interesting topic for discussion, but you threw that out as if you intended to rebut my point that James O’Keefe is a liar. Was your point that we shouldn’t care about reality?

  3. The saying has been around since the early days of the Web, but doesn’t seem to be very visible now — regard EVERYTHING you post or send electronically as equivalent to putting up a poster of it on every lamppost or fence post around you.

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