Twitter’s new chief Elon Musk has been making headlines of late for many reasons. He recently posted a poll asking users to decide whether former US President Donald Trump should be reinstated to the microblogging site once again. It is to be noted that Trump, who was the US president till January 20, 2021, was banned from Twitter in 2021 after he posted objectionable tweets supporting people who stormed the US Capitol and called them patriots.
Musk posted the poll around 6.17 AM IST on November 19, and till now 2 million people have voted. So far, around 60 per cent of respondents have voted yes for Trump’s reinstatement.
Musk on Friday first announced new rules about “negative/hate tweets”. He also announced that he has allowed Kathy Griffin, conservative satirical outlet The Babylon Bee, and Jordan Peterson, back on the app. Initially, he said that he hasn’t decided about Trump’s return to the app. Later, he posted the poll.
“New Twitter policy is freedom of speech, but not freedom of reach. Negative/hate tweets will be max deboosted & demonetized, so no ads or other revenue to Twitter,” Musk tweeted. “You won’t find the tweet unless you specifically seek it out, which is no different from rest of the Internet.”
He added, “Note, this applies just to the individual tweet, not the whole account.”
After tweeting this, he wrote about the “reinstatement” of some suspended accounts. He misspelled both Griffin, who was banned for impersonating Musk and mocking his Twitter Blue initiative, and Peterson, who was banned for being transphobic about Elliot Page.
Trump was permanently banned from Twitter in 2021 “due to the risk of further incitement of violence” after the United States Capitol attack in January 2021.
Trump’s account was first locked for 12 hours after he called the people who stormed the US Capitol "patriots".
Later, the restriction was removed, Trump wrote: “The 75,000,000 great American Patriots who voted for me, AMERICA FIRST, and MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN, will have a GIANT VOICE long into the future. They will not be disrespected or treated unfairly in any way, shape or form!!!"
Former Twitter handlers objected it to and said the tweet "is being interpreted as further indication that President Trump does not plan to facilitate an 'orderly transition'".
Trump again tweeted: "To all of those who have asked, I will not be going to the Inauguration on January 20th."
Then Twitter handlers said this was "being received by a number of his supporters as further confirmation that the election was not legitimate". Twitter said both of these tweets were "in violation of the Glorification of Violence Policy".
Trump and Musk
Musk had previously said that he’d allow Trump back on the app as it was a “mistake” to ban him. When the talks were on the Twitter deal, he had said: “Free speech is the bedrock of a functioning democracy, and Twitter is the digital town square where matters vital to the future of humanity are debated.”
He added: “I want to make Twitter better than ever by enhancing the product with new features, making the algorithms open source to increase trust, defeating the spam bots, and authenticating all humans.”
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