CNN Threatens to Dox Reddit User Behind Trump Tweet Wrestling Gif
This is not the Hanoi Hilton or Pol Pot's Khmer Rouge -- this is CNN.
Over the weekend I wrote an article on the media meltdown over a tweet by President Trump featuring an animated WWE gif of Trump bodyslamming CNN:
Here's the tweet in question:
I noted the hysterical reaction from the media cartel, which made the patently ridiculous claim that Trump was inciting violence against the media.
It turns out that the person behind the animated gif used by Trump is a Reddit user completely unconnected to Trump or the White House. He goes by the name "HanAssholeSolo."
Needless to say, the witch hunt was on to find the heretic.
It was discovered that he had previously posted material that is commonly characterized by Reddit users as "sh**posting."
CNN, the target of Trump's original tweet, tasked Andrew Kaczynski to hunt down the Reddit user and dox him.
The Reddit user posted a public apology for his behavior.
This would otherwise seem to put the matter to bed.
Yet as the late Billy Mays would say, "But wait, there's more!"
In Kaczynski's story, he outright threatens to out the Reddit user if he doesn't comply:
CNN is not publishing "HanA**holeSolo's" name because he is a private citizen who has issued an extensive statement of apology, showed his remorse by saying he has taken down all his offending posts, and because he said he is not going to repeat this ugly behavior on social media again. In addition, he said his statement could serve as an example to others not to do the same.
CNN reserves the right to publish his identity should any of that change.
Many quickly observed that this threat amounted to ideological blackmail.
Others noted that this doxxing threat amounted to a violation of Twitter's terms of service:
Another remarkable element is that Kaczynski initially claimed that the confession was extracted only after he had been contacted by CNN:
But after getting called out on that, Kaczynski reversed course and said the confession and apology came before he *spoke* with the individual:
But he admitted he had already *emailed* him.
And Kaczynski SWEARS it wasn't a threat:
But one of his CNN colleagues had already given the doxxing threat game away:
After the backlash began, he again posted that the Reddit user threatened with doxxing by CNN agreed that he wasn't threatened.
That prompted a lot of eyerolling:
Needless to say, some of Kaczynski's media-cartel colleagues lined up in support of CNN's behavior, including the New York Times television critic:
Others found Kaczynski's methods distasteful and dangerous:
Virtually all of the complaints against CNN are not in defense of the Reddit user's posts, but are targeting the coercive nature of the media conglomerate's threat to dox the individual:
As our own Instapundit observed, CNN may have made a considerable error going after a Reddit user:
There are some claims that "HanAssholeSolo" is a minor:
Some at CNN have defended the doxxing threats because of the anti-semitic nature of some of the Reddit user's other posts:
Others aren't quite convinced that warranted the media cartel being sent on a search-and-destroy mission against some unknown person because CNN was butthurt over a Trump tweet:
If it's attention CNN wanted, they've got it:
It would seem that CNN would have more pressing matters to attend to:
And then there's the obvious double standard at play:
It bears mentioning that there are other important journalistic standards at stake in this affair:
Giving some unsuspecting guy on the internet the "Joe the Plumber" treatment doesn't seem to be going over well if the Twitter trend of the #CNNBlackmail hashtag is any indication.
One might suggest that this bullying behavior by the media is yet another example of why Donald Trump was elected president to begin with. The abusive nature of CNN's doxxing threat, irrespective of whatever "HanAssholeSolo" had s***posted in the past, appears to be backfiring.
As well it should. This is not China or North Korea. This is America.