BuzzFeed India employee Pranav Dixit yesterday bullied a woman on Twitter, stalked her on professional networking site LinkedIn, reached out to her employers just because she countered him on his views. Ironically, the BuzzFeed journalist was calling the list being prepared by filmmaker Vivek Agnihotri on ‘Urban Naxals’ as ‘hit list’ of those who disagree with the current government.
Following the crackdown on supposed Maoists last week, filmmaker Vivek Agnihotri posted a message asking people to make a list of those who are defending ‘Urban Naxals’ the title of his popular book as well as a term to refer to those living in the cities and embedded in the mainstream society, but aiding movements that aim to weaken or break down the nation-state through violence. Pranav Dixit, however, thought this is a ‘hit list’, something the Nazis would make, to target individuals. He said that such a list risks ‘real-world violence’. To that, one Twitter user Seema Trivedi disagreed with him and called him out for trying to whip up a hysteria.
Trivedi tried to reason with Dixit and said that such playing up a harmless list like that is like creating a panic and putting thoughts in the heads of the people.
But something snapped and Pranav Dixit went and stalked Trivedi on social media platforms and reach out to her employers for an ‘official statement’ on her contrary views.
He even wanted to use BuzzFeed as a platform to bully Trivedi, in an attempt to intimidate her from expressing her views. This when BuzzFeed as a platform has always tried to portray itself as champions of freedom of speech. Because, how dare you ‘troll the press’?
This is not the first time Dixit has used the threats and bullying as a means to silence those who disagree with him.
Ironically, Dixit has written on online bullying and how Twitter needs to ‘step it up’ on BuzzFeed, after talking to ‘survivors of harassment, journalists and cops’.
Perhaps BuzzFeed could do an article on Pranav Dixit’s ‘targets’ who have been on the receiving end of his bullying and abuses. Speaking of abuses, Dixit also casually likes to use the ‘f-word’ for women on Twitter.
Not taking it lying down, Trivedi reached out to BuzzFeed for their employee using their platform to intimidate her.
Formal complaint will follow.Without Prejudice To the attention of @peretti @BuzzFeedBen for action against employee @PranavDixit for Blackmail, Open Threats, Malicious Intent to damage & discredit me at my work place, Abuse, Vindictive Intimidation on 1/10/18@CPDelhi @NCWIndia https://t.co/cPVLa351Wx
— Seema Trivedi (@SeemaTrivedi6) September 1, 2018
While Dixit offered a half-hearted ‘apology’ saying that his threats were ‘out of line’, Twitter users aren’t convinced and slammed Buzzfeed for maintaining an uncomfortable silence.
Hi @seematrivedi6. I think my tweets to you today were out of line and I am sorry.
— ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ (@PranavDixit) September 1, 2018
3rd case from back in 2010 @peretti @BuzzFeed that shows @PranavDixit obnoxious behavior. @RegaJha never did anything obv..@nirali_ss will follow suit.. Should I have any hope from @peretti regarding this stalker,abuser,intimidator? pic.twitter.com/7zwPGQjT3E
— Maya (@Sharanyashettyy) September 2, 2018
You have to wonder how many other women did the likes of @PranavDixit stalk, bully, threaten and damaged before he ran into one @SeemaTrivedi6 who could stand up to him.
Bullying isn’t a once off behavior, it’s a pattern one develops over time and gets bold with successes.
— Be’Havin! (@WrongDoc) September 2, 2018
— ? (@AndColorPockeT) September 1, 2018
People tagging @BuzzFeedIndia to take action against @PranavDixit for stalking and harassing a woman for disagreeing should know that he has learnt from the very best in Buzz feed. pic.twitter.com/7Fk40bUtOb
— Ishant Sharma (@CrimeMasterV2) September 2, 2018
Hello @BuzzFeed @BuzzFeedIndia @GizmodoIN, why’s your employee @PranavDixit threatening someone, just for difference in opinion? When is @ndtv @Nidhi doing a show against Journalists who threaten aam junta, tag their employees, try getting them sacked? Freedom of Speech, my foot! pic.twitter.com/M7PpzaQmOM
— गीतिका (@ggiittiikkaa) September 1, 2018
Hi @Twitter @verfied this employee of @Buzzfeed @PranavDixit is threatening and intimidating women for disagreeing with him and he is using his official position for it. @peretti must look into the functions of @BuzzFeedIndia https://t.co/eS06vBzfih
— अंकित जैन (@indiantweeter) September 2, 2018
People in powerful positions using their platforms to go after common citizens whom they don’t agree with is not new. A journalist associated with TheWire, Swati Chaturvedi, wrote a book doxxing private individuals and labelling them as ‘trolls’ just because most supported Prime Minister Modi. She, too, had doxxed OpIndia co-founder and gone after his personal life. Similarly, TMC MP Derek O’Brien has used his Parliamentary privilege to name and shame Twitter users who disagree with him and has even used ‘naming and shaming in the Parliament’ as a way to silence those who disagree with him.