Twitter concealed nearly half of tweets bearing the hashtag #DNCLeak and nearly a quarter of those with #PodestaEmails during the last two months of the 2016 presidential campaign, according to new testimony from Twitter’s general counsel.
On October 31, the US Senate Committee on the Judiciary, Subcommittee on Crime and Terrorism heard testimony from Twitter general counsel Sean Edgett in its investigation of possible Russian interference in the 2016 election.
The testimony said that Twitter concealed substantial numbers of tweets relating to leaked emails from the Democratic National Committee as well as from Clinton campaign chair John Podesta.
“We found that slightly under 4% of Tweets containing #PodestaEmails came from accounts with potential links to Russia,” Edgett said in testimony, whereas of tweets bearing the #DNCLeak, “roughly 2% were from potentially Russian-linked accounts,” he said.
Twitter hid 48 percent of tweets with the #DNCLeak hashtag and 25 percent of tweets with #PodestaEmails, Edgett claims.
Edgett, however, did not make any mention of another hashtag, namely #DNCLeaks, in the plural, the original hashtag. It was one of the top trending topics on Twitter on July 22 with over 250,000 tweets, reportedly made after WikiLeaks released more than 19,000 leaked emails from the Democratic National Committee. Later on in the day, however, the hashtag reportedly disappeared from the trending bar for some 20 minutes, before reappearing under the less popular hashtag “#DNCleak.”