Twitter’s former head of trust and safety reportedly fled his home following “an escalation in threats” over resurfaced tweets along with Twitter Files revelations.
Roth reportedly fled his home following “exponentially” escalated threats towards the former Twitter executive after old tweets from the former tech executive resurfaced questioning if “high school students” could “meaningfully consent to sex with their teachers,” among other controversial posts, CNN reported.
Twitter's former head of trust and safety has fled his home due to an escalation in threats resulting from Elon Musk's campaign of criticism against him, a person familiar with the matter told CNN. https://t.co/y3Nvp42Ls5
— CNN (@CNN) December 12, 2022
Roth provided a link to a November 2010 Salon article in his tweet titled: “Student-teacher sex: When is it OK?”
Can high school students ever meaningfully consent to sex with their teachers? http://bit.ly/bbpH68
— Yoel Roth (@yoyoel) November 20, 2010
Along with the aforementioned tweet, the former tech executive also posted a series of tweets discussing pornography.
Other surfaced tweets indicated the former Twitter executive ran a separate account, @otterriffic, which users noted appears to have been scrubbed.
One user retweeted one of Roth’s @otterriffic tweets, according to another user.
“#agree. RT @otterriffic Musclebear with beard: hot. Musclebear with beard holding a child: inexplicably hotter,” read the alleged tweet.
In a 2011 tweet, Roth confirmed the existence of the now-scrubbed account in a March 2011 tweet: ‘Guilty as charged.’
Grad student I'm staying with: "You're not that innocent. I know about your secret dirty Twitter account." Guilty as charged. (@otterriffic)
— Yoel Roth (@yoyoel) March 4, 2011
Twitter owner Elon Musk tapped journalists Matt Taibbi, Michael Schellenberger, and former New York Times editor Bari Weiss to investigate and report on internal information obtained by the tech billionaire following his October acquisition of the company.
The Twitter Files revealed Roth had been in contact and participated in meetings with the FBI discussing censorship of the former President Donald Trump. The former tech executive, along with former head of legal, policy, and trust Vijaya Gadde, reportedly played an integral role in the platform’s censorship of the New York Post and subsequent permanent ban of Trump.
Roth was also confirmed to have been involved in other previously suspected censorship tactics within Twitter including disabled engagements and deaplification/visibility filtering along with “technicality spam enforcement” in regards to shadow-banning.
“We should use remediations that reduce exposure, and limiting the spread/virality of content is a good way to do that,” Roth wrote according to internal Slack communications revealed in Thursday’s Twitter Files installment.
The former head of trust and safety also belonged to Twitter’s internal Site Integrity Policy, Policy Escalation Support (SIP-PES) group handling high profile accounts, including Libs of Tik Tok, Weiss reported.
In late October, prior to Roth’s surfaced tweets, Musk shared what appeared to be internal Twitter communications from Roth saying the platform was “literally doing what Elon is accusing us of doing.”
Musk defended the former Twitter executive, saying “we’ve all made some questionable tweets, [myself] more than most.”
“But I want to be clear that I support Yoel,” Musk continued. “My sense is that he has high integrity, and we are all entitled to our political beliefs.”
We’ve all made some questionable tweets, me more than most, but I want to be clear that I support Yoel. My sense is that he has high integrity, and we are all entitled to our political beliefs.
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) October 31, 2022
Roth, who subsequently left Twitter in November, appeared on On With Kara Swisher and wrote a New York Times op-ed discussing his decision to leave the company.