Angered over Rudy Giuliani's portrayal in the latest 'Borat' sequel, conservatives accused Twitter of promoting "revenge porn" against the former New York City mayor. The backlash against the micro-blogging site came after screenshots from the Sacha Baron Cohen-starrer mockumentary circulated claiming that Giuliani was filmed in a compromising position with a young woman during a sting set up by Cohen.
On Wednesday, the viral pictures showed Giuliani lying on a bed with his one hand inside his pants as a young woman stood next to him. The screenshots were from Cohen's upcoming movie 'Borat Subsequent Moviefilm,' in which the woman lured him into a hotel room that had hidden cameras. Giuliani believed the woman was a conservative journalist interviewing him.
The young woman is, in fact, 'Tutar' who is the daughter of 'Borat' — played by Cohen. The scene, which involved Giuliani reportedly flirting with the woman, ended with Borat entering the room and declaring: "She's 15, she's too old for you."
Throughout the scene, there was no indication that the woman was underage. Slamming the allegations against him, Giuliani tweeted that the video was a "complete fabrication" and that he was "tucking in" his shirt after he removed his recording equipment.
"At no time before, during, or after the interview was I ever inappropriate. If Sacha Baron Cohen implied otherwise, he is a stone-cold liar," Giuliani said.
Conservatives Support Rudy Giuliani
Fellow conservatives gathered in Giuliani's support and attacked Twitter for allowing the screenshots to circulate widely on its platform, thus promoting "revenge porn" against the 76-year-old, who is also President Donald Trump's lawyer. The critics also likened the situation to Hunter Biden's New York Post story that Twitter blocked citing violation of its hacked materials rules.
According to conservative author Mike Cernovich, the 'Borat' scene could fall into the "revenge porn" category under New York law. He also noted that the video could violate Twitter guidelines. While Cernovich did not make it clear which Twitter rule was violated by sharing the pictures, the social media company prohibits "abusive behavior" targeting an individual.
"We prohibit behavior that encourages others to harass or target specific individuals or groups with abusive behavior. This includes, but is not limited to; calls to target people with abuse or harassment online and behavior that urges offline action such as physical harassment," the Twitter rule states.
Journalist Robby Soave said that Twitter should have blocked Giuliani's 'Borat' photos because it "contains personal information obtained in an underhanded way and without Giuliani's permission" — in the same vein when it banned sharing of Hunter Biden stories.