CNN may have literally violated federal law in their attempt to manipulate an alleged Reddit user who claims was behind the creation of a short video posted by President Donald J. Trump.
The meme posted showed Trump outside of a World Wrestling Entertainment ring and clotheslining a superimposed image of CNN logo.
It was entertainment, one of the most retweeted images ever on Twitter. That however didn't stop rogue Fake News outlet CNN from going on the attack, claiming the Reddit user who made the image posted racist comments prior with a mix of Islapmaphobia and antisemitism on his Reddit account.
CNN then claimed via Andrew Kaczynksi on Twitter that they had hunted down the Reddit user and received an apology from him. In their press release they stated they would not release his identity but reserved the right to publish his name if they felt the need to.
This was essentially taken as a threat and sent a massive backlash across social media in a firestorm of angry right wing Trump supporters and pundits as well as celebrities.
Let's take a look at what some of them had to say including the media in regards to what is now perceived as an attempt to blackmail Reddit user HanAssholeSolo into apologizing with the fear the outlet would ‘dox’ him endangering his life if he didn't.
Julian Assange wrote that “CNN also appears to have committed a federal felony violation of 18 U.S. Code § 241 in relation to the 1st Amendment”.
Julian Assange’s tweet would send shockwaves across the political arena as well as reach into the hearts and minds of millions on the right. CNN had potentially violated federal law.
MSNBC's Political Analyst Dr. Jason Johnson tweeted that “I'm not proposing any legal action. I'm saying if someone is worried about it don't post gifs with someone's logo”.
In basically suggesting that he defended CNN’s right to blackmail or dox someone who posts something he doesn't like. Sad!
USA Today wrote that, “It's the antithesis of journalism for a news organization to monitor speech and decide whether someone is crossing a line and should be ruined.”
USA Today is not only correct and spot on with their remarks but they underscore an important point; that once the media begins to objectively interfere in what a private citizen is or is not allowed to say they're essentially no longer the media.
Fox News asked it's own readers, “Did CNN commit a crime?” Then they continued to underscore responses from elsewhere across the web.
Eventually quoting Senator Ted Cruz saying, “Troubling. I assume CNN's lawyers are examining GA § 16-8-16 Theft by extortion. If CNN constructively obtained the gif-maker's IP…it's a GA crime if they threatened to ‘Disseminate any information tending to subject any person to hatred, contempt, or ridicule….” Cruz’s words shows just how troubling the actions of CNN were.
Ethan Ralph, of the Ralph Retort stated that CNN is justifying their own wrongdoings by trying to pin blame on the President for somehow not knowing about the Reddit user's history.
He wrote, “A political contributor for MSNBC has thrown his hat in the ring to come to the defense of illegal extortion being conducted by CNN in retaliation for an embarrassing meme that was tweeted out by the president.”
Raw Story however took a totally different approach, targeting the imageboard 8chan with slander and outright lies alongside political commentator Jack Posobiec as a target.
Raw Story wrote, “Jack Posobiec, a controversial pro-Trump activist who has attended White House briefings, hyped information on Wednesday that he claimed were the personal details of multiple CNN employees and talent.”
They continued with, “In a message posted to Twitter, which Raw Story is not linking to, Posobiec said that he received the information from the white supremacist group 8chan.”
To clarify, this is false. Jack is friends with some programmers who happen to use image boards. They are not white supremacists.
They are right wing activists. Jack was correct that 8ch did dox CNN reporters in response to their blackmail. Jack did nothing wrong, and the attack on him should result in a lawsuit.
8chan is not a white supremacist website. It's an imageboard that allows free speech that may often be graphic and vulgar sure. A user can create a board and allow other users to post there without any restraint.
In fact 8chan has several image boards on it's site, including /christian/ a religious board, /tv/ which discusses popular television culture, /leftypol/ which is a progressive demographic, /pol/ which is Politically Incorrect (uncensored), among dozens of others.
To call 8chan a ‘white supremacist’ website is not just slander if not libel and defamation of character, it's an outright lie.
What is abundantly clear at this point is that CNN chose to stoop to low tactics in order to retaliate against a user who triggered them by his or her past post history on Reddit.
What also seemingly could have occurred is that CNN was given the IP address of HanAssholeSolo. CNN possibly then used it's own connection to the internet service provider Time Warner to locate the individual.
Such actions should not only be condemned, but CNN continues to defend their attack and possible blackmail of the Reddit user versus apologizing. Truly remarkable, but not surprising.