Twitter Bans Researcher Who Documented Journalists Who Cheer Leaded For Antifa
Twitter has now banned Eoin Lenihan, a researcher and educator who published a lengthy article revealing the major connections between Antifa and mainstream journalists.
Lenihan, who consults with educators on the topics of curriculum development, international education, EdTech and online extremism, was banned from Twitter on the same day he published an article in Quillette titled “It’s Not Your Imagination: The Journalists Writing About Antifa Are Often Their Cheerleaders.”
In October 2018, my research partner and I decided to investigate the truth of this impression by using a mix of network mapping and linguistic analysis to see which prominent journalists who covered Antifa also were closely connected to leading Antifa figures on social media. We then inspected the Antifa-related stories these journalists had written.
We created a data set of 58,254 Antifa or Antifa-associated Twitter accounts based on the follows of 16 verified Antifa seed accounts. Using a software tool that analyzed the number and nature of connections associated with each individual account, we winnowed the 58,254 Antifa or Antifa-associated Twitter accounts down to 962 accounts. This represents a core group of Twitter users who are connected in overlapping ways to the most influential and widely followed Antifa figures. Of these 962 accounts, 22 were found to be verified—of which 15 were journalists who work regularly with national-level news outlets.
It is unclear why he was banned from Twitter, but it could be because he previously used a now-banned parody account, @ProgDad, which posted absurd commentary portrayed as coming from a far-left, progressive father.
However, it has been speculated that he was banned for outing major, mainstream journalists as sympathetic to Antifa.
Lenihan was suspended early Wednesday morning, prompting speculation about the ban.
Andy Ngo, a Wall Street Journal contributor and editor at Quillette, alleges that Lenihan was suspended following mass reports by members of AntiFa on Twitter.
It has long been suspected that establishment journalists maintain close ties to far-left activists including AntiFa. Until now, these connections remained largely in the realm of speculation.
The researcher identified over a dozen verified “national-level journalists,” who were in his estimation never “markedly critical of AntiFa in any way” in their coverage of leftist political violence.
This latest ban comes only one day after another prominent journalist, Nick Monroe, was banned from Twitter after he painstakingly detailed examples of mainstream journalists parroting a fake quote written by a TIME columnist, in which he claimed President Donald Trump said North Korean dictator Kim Jong-un would make a better president than former vice president Joe Biden.