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Bleu, a sex trafficking survivor and victims advocate, has been working with Elon Musk to scrub the platform of creeps and sickos, something critics say the pre-Musk Twitter content police failed to prioritize. Shapiro hosted Bleu on his popular podcast and radio show Wednesday, where she vouched for Musk’s commitment to clean up Twitter.
“I have been in close communication with Elon Musk,” she said of the self-described “Chief Twit,” who tweeted last month that keeping child predators off the platform is his top priority.
Bleu, now 41, was an advocate for victims of sex trafficking before revealing her own story in early 2020 in a dramatic interview with The Daily Wire. She was just 18 when she moved to Los Angeles with the dream of becoming a star, but a man who promised to help her make it big instead sold her into the sex trade, and her life spiraled. She told Shapiro she got out for a time, but then fell back into drugs and prostitution before reaching out for help and turning her life around.
Bleu’s decision to tell her own story to The Daily Wire two years ago lent urgency to what she said was a particularly dangerous time in the early days of the COVID lockdowns.
“Pre-teens and teens at home alone with their parents for days on end due to school closures will be groomed by predators online,” Bleu told The Daily Wire at the time. “They will be promised a ‘better life’ if they run away. The national average runaway is trafficked within 48 hours of leaving home.”
Perverts and pedophiles use Twitter to post extremely disturbing images and videos of children being abused. The criminals behind the efforts are often able to stay one step ahead of the platform’s algorithms, creating new accounts in order to post the illegal content. Critics have long said Twitter wasn’t doing enough to police such activity, however, and earlier this year, several major companies pulled their advertisements in protest.
In January 2021, Bleu took on Twitter founder Jack Dorsey when the platform allegedly refused to take down a disturbing video of a 13-year-old boy who had been trafficked. Since Dorsey followed her, she was able to direct-message him, but she claims Twitter still didn’t take down the video, which garnered more than 160,000 views and over 2,000 retweets. That was when she began to think Dorsey’s Twitter wasn’t sufficiently committed to the cause.
A lawsuit brought on behalf of that boy was joined by another young plaintiff allegedly exploited on the platform. The more she delved into the two cases, the more Bleu began to believe Twitter was complicit in their exploitation.
“These young men were on the brink of suicide,” Bleu said. “It was being shared around their schools.”
Cybersecurity data analyst Andrea Stroppa, founder of cybersecurity group Ghost Data, who helped Twitter root out accounts that posted content showing exploitation of children, told The Daily Wire that Musk is doing more than his predecessors to address the problem.
“I found that old Twitter, in many cases related to child sexual abuse material published on the platform by malicious users, instead of suspending the whole account, just removed the tweet,” Stroppa said. “Now Twitter, under Elon Musk’s leadership, directly suspends the accounts.”
If you or someone you know of has been abused by sex traffickers, call the National Human Trafficking Hotline at 1-888-373-7888; text HELP to 233733; HumanTraffickingHotline.org.