Tucker Carlson, the former Fox News host announced on Tuesday that he will be launching a new version of his show on Twitter. In a nearly three-minute video posted on the platform, Carlson offered only a few details about the show and took the opportunity to criticize the news media, something that has become a familiar theme for him.
Carlson called Twitter the “last big one remaining in the world” for free speech, seemingly implying that other social media platforms do not allow for this. “Twitter isn’t a partisan site,” he said. “Everyone is allowed here.” However, Twitter CEO Elon Musk made it clear that Carlson would be subject to the same rules and rewards as all users, including subscription revenue and the platform’s content moderation feature known as “Community Notes”.
Twitter CEO Elon Musk is trying to get former CNN anchor Don Lemon to join conservative commentator Tucker Carlson on the platform.
Musk also clarified that no deal has been signed, though he did reach out to former CNN anchor Don Lemon on Wednesday, urging him to give Twitter a try. “Have you considered doing your show on this platform? Maybe worth a try,” Musk tweeted. “Audience is much bigger.”
Carlson recently left Fox News, though it’s unclear why as neither he nor the network have commented on the matter. The network did announce that it would pay nearly $800 million to Dominion Voting Systems after the company sued Fox for defamation. While a Fox spokesperson and Carlson’s lawyer did not respond to requests for comment, it’s clear that the show “Tucker Carlson Tonight” was one of the most-watched shows on American cable news, and its departure from Fox News will undoubtedly be felt.
Carlson has gained notoriety for promoting conspiracy theories and disinformation, such as the racist “great replacement” theory found on fringe sites like 4chan. He has also used his platform to target people. Abby Grossberg, a former producer for Carlson, filed a lawsuit alleging that he fostered a work environment that was “subjugated women based on vile sexist stereotypes, typecasted religious minorities and belittled their traditions, and demonstrated little to no regard for mental health.” A spokeswoman for Fox News has denied Grossberg’s claims, stating that they are “riddled with false allegations.”
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It’s not surprising that Carlson is moving to Twitter, given that Musk’s public persona has veered sharply to the right, and he has dabbled in fringe conspiracy theories in recent years, as evidenced by his prolific tweeting.
On Tuesday, Musk pushed a discredited theory that Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg swung the 2020 election and cast doubt on reporting that showed the man who recently killed eight people at a Dallas-area mall was linked to extremist social media posts.
It remains to be seen what kind of content Carlson will produce on Twitter, but his arrival is sure to spark controversy and draw the attention of both his supporters and detractors.