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Pro-Censorship NPR CEO Chairs Board Of ‘Free Speech’ Foundation

Anastasia Boushee
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National Public Radio (NPR) CEO Katherine Maher, who has repeatedly attacked the First Amendment in past comments, reportedly sits on the board of directors of a “free speech” nonprofit foundation.

Maher, who previously served as CEO of Wikipedia, is now the chair of the Signal Foundation’s board of directors. The company, which claims to be committed to free speech, is the nonprofit organization behind the Signal messaging app. Signal now has more than 40 million users after a surge in sign-ups in 2021 thanks to its reputation of independence from Big Tech companies and its much-touted security via end-to-end encryption.

The Signal Foundation’s website includes a biography for Maher, which states: “Katherine Maher is the former CEO and Executive Director of the Wikimedia Foundation, responsible for Wikipedia. She is currently a non-resident Senior Fellow at the Atlantic Council, where her work focuses on the intersection of technology, human rights, and democracy.”


The news that a company supposedly committed to free speech would hire Maher was shocking to many on social media, especially in light of recent revelations about her strong opposition to Americans’ rights to speak freely.

The revelations came about in the aftermath of a scathing essay published in The Free Press by now-former NPR senior business editor Uri Berliner, who called out the clear left-wing bias that has caused the news outlet to lose “America’s trust.”

After his essay was published, NPR suspended Berliner without pay — prompting him to resign from his position, noting in a statement posted on X, formerly known as Twitter: “I cannot work in a newsroom where I am disparaged by a new CEO whose divisive views confirm the very problems at NPR I cite in my Free Press essay.”

Those “divisive views” have largely been exposed thanks to Manhattan Institute for Policy Research senior fellow Christopher Rufo — who called Maher out on X, sharing numerous videos and quotes from the NPR CEO that clearly don’t align with the “free speech” commitments of the Signal Foundation.


One such video showed her comments about free speech during a 2021 TED Talk, where Maher claimed that truth is subjective and praised the fact that her former employer, Wikipedia, uses crowd-sourced information that does not focus on objective truth — which she claimed was getting in the way of getting things done.

“When it comes to the hard things, the places where we are prone to disagreement, say politics and religion—Well, as it turns out, not only does Wikipedia’s model work there, it actually works really well,” she said. 

“Because in our normal lives, these contentious conversations tend to erupt over a disagreement about what the truth actually is. But the people who write these articles, they’re not focused on the truth,” Maher continued.

Rufo also shared a clip of Maher explaining that, as CEO of Wikipedia, she had taken “a very active approach to disinformation” that involved coordinating censorship “through conversations with government.”

In light of the news of Maher’s position on the Signal Foundation’s board of directors, many on social media expressed concern about the Signal app’s claims of being pro-free speech. Some, like libertarian entrepreneur Jeremy Kauffman, pointed out that they were far less concerned about a pro-censorship CEO at NPR — as the company has already lost the trust of the American people for pushing far-left propaganda — instead arguing that her position at Signal was “far more concerning.”