In 2021, CBC President and CEO Catherine Tait and Executive Vice-President of Corporate Development Claude Galipeau penned a number of emails to Twitter's Canadian Managing Director Paul Burns, Deputy General Counsel Stephanie King, and even CEO Jack Dorsey himself, calling on them to go after specific accounts that the public broadcaster argued were putting journalists at risk of being harmed.
According to Rebel News, Tait first contacted Burns on May 6, 2021, informing him that she was unhappy with the "unacceptable abuse" journalists were suffering on Twitter, calling on him to help "stop the flow of hate" on the platform.
Tait urged Burns to revamp Twitter's infringement process, suggesting it was too slow, and failed to take care of improper content efficiently and consistently, and asked for a meeting with him so the pair could tackle the issue together.
Two weeks later, another email was sent to King from a redacted CBC address, asking her to investigate a series of tweets claiming the public broadcaster had "banned all content that is sympathetic to Palestinians," accusing it of being run by "Jewish White Supremacists" and threatening to "liberate" Arab and Muslims in "Apartheid Canada."
The tweets, CBC argued, were in clear violation of Twitter's policies, and should be taken down as they constituted an "incitement to violence." The email also called on Twitter to do more when media organizations flag content on the platform.
After another two weeks went by without an answer from Twitter, CBC sent another email to King, this time leaning harder into their accusation that the platform "continues to weaponize the online harassment and abuse of journalists," and "attacks trusted news sources."
Two weeks later, Tait sent an email to Dorsey, explaining that while she had finally met with Twitter representatives, it had been "unsatisfactory." She informed him that she and others at CBC had been sharing their "mounting concerns" with the federal government and that Twitter's lack of action could result in laws being passed to ensure the public broadcaster's demands were met.
On Thursday, journalist Matt Taibbi confirmed that Twitter's meeting with Tait had been cut short after the CBC exec "threatened legal action."
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