Twitter Under Pressure To Stop Trump's Malicious Tweets

On Twitter, Donald Trump rivals the most malicious trolls and purveyors of misinformation. Yet his status as a world leader makes him immune to the social network’s posting policies.

Albeit indirectly, that was the message from Twitter on Friday, as the company faces mounting public pressure to stop broadcasting Trump’s endless stream of personal attacks, provocations and disinformation.

“Elected world leaders play a critical role in that conversation because of their outsized impact on our society,” Twitter notes in a new statement. “Blocking a world leader from Twitter or removing their controversial Tweets, would hide important information people should be able to see and debate.”

Among other displays of outrage over Trump’s provocations and threats of nuclear war, protestors projected the phrase “@jack is #complicit” onto the walls of Twitter’s San Francisco offices this week.

The message, of course, refers to Twitter’s second-time CEO Jack Dorsey. 

Officially, Twitter says it does review tweets by world leaders within “the political context that defines them,” and then enforces its rules accordingly.

In its Friday statement, Twitter also insisted that business decisions don’t factor into its unwillingness to interrupt the accounts of powerful users. “No one person’s account drives Twitter’s growth, or influences these decisions,” it stressed. 

Addressing one of Trump’s more notorious tweets, Twitter was recently forced to explain its decision not to police his threats against North Korea. While the taunts would normally have triggered Twitter’s anti-aggression policy, Twitter explained that their “newsworthiness” made them acceptable.

More broadly, CEO Jack Dorsey and other Twitter executives have recently been forced to admit they could be doing a better job of communicating its content-policing policies to users. 

In November, Twitter published a clearer version of its content policing policies. This latest set of rules were short on concrete changes, but long on additional rationale for controversial policies and enforcement methods. 

That included updating Twitter’s media policy Help Center page to include expectation-setting examples of the types of content covered by the policy.

While world leaders may get a pass, Twitter has been trying to clean up its network. 

Last month, for instance, it began cracking down on what it considers to be “hateful” content.

3 comments about "Twitter Under Pressure To Stop Trump's Malicious Tweets".
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  1. Rafael Cosentino from Telanya, January 8, 2018 at 9:15 a.m.

    I dont see any examples of these allegedly "hateful" tweets posted here?  Surely this must be an oversight. How about sharing "one of trump's more notroious tweets" so we can see the hate and misinformation described. Please, more journlism, less opinion.

  2. Paula Lynn from Who Else Unlimited, January 8, 2018 at 10:42 a.m.

    May he have to testify these as truths-lies and be held accountable. We know the consequences of a president lying to congress, the FBI and CIA. His cell in the tRump wing at Gitmo with his spawn and henchmen can even be painted orange.

  3. Jeff Martin from IMF, January 8, 2018 at 12:34 p.m.

    "troll and purveyors of misinformation" would need to include several outlets such as MSNBC, CNN and others. No mention of them being targeted for censoring.

    Even so, how does it make any sense to block.censor the world's most influential and pwerful public office?

    "explain its decision not to police his threats against North Korea" so threats/promises of action against a rogue regime who has threatened the citizens of the US and it's allies for decades. What do you expect? "pretty please with a cherry ontop" hasn't worked in decades. SJWs at their finest in representing their niavete and lack of historical understanding. 

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