April 13, 2023
From Morgan Holm, OPB senior vice president and chief content officer:
NPR recently announced that it will cease making fresh posts to its official Twitter accounts, after the social media platform labeled NPR as “state-affiliated media,” the same term it uses for propaganda outlets in autocratic countries, and then later as “government-funded media.” PBS has similarly chosen to stop tweeting from its main Twitter account after being labeled the same way.
Although Twitter has not changed OPB’s account designation, we are choosing to follow NPR’s decision and formally pause our presence on Twitter. Many journalists and news organizations joined Twitter over the years to participate in a free-flowing environment of shared information and discourse, resulting in illuminating conversations that were not happening on other platforms. A series of seemingly arbitrary decisions by Twitter, along with its apparent disregard for the norms of journalism in America, now threatens to undermine our credibility and mission if we continue to use the platform as we have in the past.
OPB remains committed to the highest standards of independent journalism as a public service, and we value the individual support of our members, which makes our work possible. Members are the primary source of funding at OPB (about 75%), and this enables us to act independently and in the public interest as journalists.
We will continue to monitor activity at Twitter, and if circumstances change, we may reevaluate this decision. In the meantime, individual OPB staff members are free to continue using Twitter at their own discretion, though we will henceforth cease updating our four organizational accounts as of today.
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