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Elon Musk celebrates ‘free speech’ win over Australia’s censorship commissar – but won’t unban high profile nationalists

Elon Musk has celebrated a win for X over Australia’s online censorship chief as a victory for free speech, yet some of Australia’s highest profile nationalists remain banned from the platform for unknown reasons.

Australian eSafety Commissioner Julie Inman Grant announced on Wednesday that she had decided to discontinue a case against X Corp in the Federal Court demanding the removal of videos of the alleged Muslim terrorist stabbing of Bishop Mar Mari Emmanuel in Sydney in April.

“After weighing multiple considerations, including litigation across multiple cases, I have considered this option likely to achieve the most positive outcome for the online safety of all Australians, especially children,” Ms Inman Grant said.

“Our sole goal and focus in issuing our removal notice was to prevent this extremely violent footage from going viral, potentially inciting further violence and inflicting more harm on the Australian community and I stand by my investigators and the decisions eSafety made.”

Musk responded to the news with a post on X stating: “Freedom of speech is worth fighting for.”

But users pointed out that many Australians remain banned from the platform, including nationalist activist Blair Cottrell, who was the first to be deplatformed from social media and debanked for his political views in 2018, while European Australian Movement leader Thomas Sewell had his account suspended hours before Ms Inman Grant’s decision.

Mr Cottrell told Noticer News there was no specific tweet that got him banned, and said that his requests asking what tweet violated the Twitter rules had been ignored for the past six years.

Mr Sewell shared a post that got his account banned late on Tuesday night. It read “100% B”, but X told him it “violated our rules against violent speech”. Noticer News understands that Mr Sewell is in the process of appealing the suspension.

Blair Cottrell
Blair Cottrell (supplied)

British nationalists Mark Collett, Sam Melia and Laura Towler of activist group Patriotic Alternative also remain banned. Mr Melia is currently serving a two-year jail sentence for creating anti-immigration stickers, and has recently been denied access to his own children while behind bars.

Then why haven’t you restored Blair Cottrell, Australia’s most well known Nationalist commentator? Honour your principles!” wrote Joel Davis, who hosts a weekly podcast with Mr Cottrell, in reply to Musk’s post.

“Elon are you all talk, or will you restore Blair’s freedom of speech?” one X user asked.

“The political prisoner Sam Melia and his wife Laura Towler’s accounts should be reinstated. What is being done to that family by the British establishment is sickening,” said another.

Since buying the platform Musk has unbanned tens of thousands of users, and last month lifted the suspension of controversial American right-wing media personality Nick Fuentes, saying at the time: “[Fuentes] will be reinstated, provided he does not violate the law, and let him be crushed by the comments and Community Notes.

“It is better to have anti whatever out in the open to be rebutted than grow simmering in the darkness.”

It is unclear whether, as many users believe, Musk’s directions are being ignored by politically motivated X employees who disagree with his free speech stance and continue to ban right-wing users that are mass-reported by far-left activist groups.

Ms Inman Grant, an unelected bureaucrat on a taxpayer-funded salary of $445,000 a year, accused Musk on Wednesday of issuing a “dog-whistle to 181 million users around the glob” which she claimed led to death threats and the doxxing of her children.

She said that other litigation against X would continue, and was supported by Opposition leader Peter Dutton who described her as “one of the finest public servants in the employment of the Commonwealth of Australia” and condemned the alleged abuse and threats.

Ms Inman Grant’s withdrawal of the case against X comes after she admitted having a conflict of interest in a different removal notice issued to X, concerning an honest and factual post by Canadian activist Billboard Chris that called female World Health Organisation policymaker Teddy Cook a woman.

She told a Senate Estimates committee that her office worked with Ms Cook’s organisation ACON, but claimed not to have spoken to her “in person” and said she was not involved in the decision to order X to take down the post or face a fine of nearly $800,000.

Read Blair Cottrell’s opinion piece for The Noticer about his ban here.

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