The University of Pennsylvania temporarily blocked a doctoral dissertation from Twitter’s former head of safety, Yoel Roth, after new Twitter CEO Elon Musk tweeted about it.
Musk, who has been purging Twitter employees and exposing the company’s history of anti-conservative bias through the “Twitter Files,” was previously laudatory of Roth, tweeting just in October that Roth “has high integrity.”
That appears to have changed after Roth announced his resignation from Twitter and published a New York Times op-ed on Nov. 18, declaring that “a Twitter whose policies are defined by edict” via Musk “has little need for a trust and safety function dedicated to its principled development.”
The releasing of new Twitter Files from Substack journalist Matt Taibbi last week also revealed that Roth apparently attended weekly meetings with the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Department of Homeland Security and the Director of National Intelligence about moderating content ahead of the 2020 election.
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On Saturday afternoon, Musk tweeted about Roth’s 2016 dissertation at the University of Pennsylvania, titled, “Gay Data,” which suggested ways to improve the LGBTQ dating app Grindr. Musk highlighted Roth’s argument on Page 248, in which Roth suggested that sites like Grindr should consider “crafting safety strategies that can accommodate a wide variety of use cases,” including for young adults.
“Looks like Yoel is arguing in favor of children being able to access adult Internet services in his PhD thesis,” Musk tweeted.
On Saturday and Sunday, Roth’s dissertation was inaccessible on the University of Pennsylvania’s Scholarly Commons website, according to internet archives on Wayback Machine. A note next to the work’s title on the website during that time read, “This paper has been withdrawn.”
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The university told Fox News Digital in a statement that the designation was a mistake and has since been corrected.
“On December 10, access to the dissertation of University of Pennsylvania graduate Yoel Roth, Ph.D., was mistakenly closed off on Scholarly Commons, one of the two digital sites on which dissertations by Penn doctoral graduates can be publicly accessed,” said Director of Media Relations Ron Ozio.
“That error triggered a pre-set statement in the vendor’s system inaccurately indicating that the paper had been withdrawn,” he said. “The dissertation can now be accessed on both Scholarly Commons and ProQuest.”
Roth did not immediately respond to Fox News Digital’s request for comment.
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