ALEX VEIGA (AP Business Writer)
LOS ANGELES (AP) — Elon Musk overturned a ban that has kept the former president off social media sites since pro-Trump mobs attacked the U.S. Capitol on Jan. I reactivated Donald Trump’s account on Twitter. He was ready to prove Joe Biden’s election victory.
Musk made the announcement late at night after a poll asking Twitter users to click yes or no on whether Trump’s account should be restored. The yes vote he won with 51.8%. Musk has previously said Twitter would establish new procedures and a “content moderation council” before making a decision to reinstate suspended accounts.
“People have spoken. Mr. Trump will be reinstated. Vox Populi, Vox Dei,” Musk tweeted, using a Latin phrase meaning “voice of the people, voice of God.”
Shortly after, Trump’s previously seemingly suspended account resurfaced on the platform, along with more than 59,000 previous tweets. His followers were gone, at least at first, but he soon began to win them back. However, as of Saturday’s end, there have been no new tweets from this account.
Musk restored his account less than a month after Tesla’s CEO took control of Twitter, and four days after Trump announced his candidacy for the 2024 presidential election. did.
It’s not clear if Trump will actually return to Twitter. Trump, who tweeted irrepressibly before being banned, has said in the past that he would never participate again if the account was revived. He has relied on Truth Social, a much smaller social media site he launched after being blocked from Twitter.
And in a video speech at the Republican Jewish Group conference in Las Vegas on Saturday, Trump said he was aware of Musk’s polls, but that “Twitter has a lot of problems.”
“I hear Twitter is getting a big vote to reopen too. “It may or may not work,” he added.
Following Musk’s acquisition of Twitter last month, the possibility of returning Trump’s presence to the platform has emerged. The acquisition raised widespread concerns that billionaire owners would allow providers of lies and disinformation to thrive on the site. Musk has frequently expressed his belief that Twitter limits free speech too much.
His efforts to rebuild the site are swift and chaotic. Musk laid off many of the company’s 7,500 full-time workers and countless contractors with content moderation and other important responsibilities. His request to commit has sparked a wave of resignations, including hundreds of software engineers.
Users are reporting an increase in spam and fraud in their feeds and direct messages in the aftermath of mass layoffs and worker exodus. Some programmers who were fired or resigned this week warned that Twitter could soon unravel and actually crash.
An online poll posted on Musk’s own Twitter account garnered more than 15 million votes in the 24 hours it ran.
Musk conceded that the results were hardly scientific. “An army of bots and trolls may be running out of power soon,” he tweeted Saturday morning. “An interesting lesson to sort through for future polls.”
This isn’t the first time he’s used Twitter polls to make business decisions. Last year, he sold millions of Tesla shares after asking his followers if he should.
Democratic Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York responded to Musk’s poll against Trump by tweeting a video of the Jan. 6 riots. She said on Friday that when Trump last appeared on Twitter, he was “used to incite riots, multiple people were killed, the Vice President of the United States was nearly assassinated, and hundreds were injured. , I don’t think that’s the answer,” he tweeted. question. Twitter poll.
Trump lost access to Twitter two days after his supporters stormed the Capitol, shortly after the former president encouraged them to “fight like hell.” Twitter deleted Trump’s account after he wrote two tweets of his that the company said cast further doubt on the legitimacy of the presidential election and increased the risk of a Biden presidency.
After the Jan. 6 attacks, Trump was kicked out of Meta Platforms-owned Facebook and Instagram, as well as Snapchat. His ability to post videos on his YouTube channel has also been suspended. Facebook plans to reconsider Trump’s account suspension in January.
During his tenure as president, Trump’s use of social media was dominated by major social media outlets that sought to balance public interest in hearing from public officials with concerns about misinformation, prejudice, harassment and incitement to violence. It posed a big challenge for media platforms.
But in a speech at an auto conference in May, Musk argued that Twitter’s banning of Trump was a “bad moral decision” and “extremely stupid.”
Musk, which completed its $44 billion acquisition of Twitter in late October, declared earlier this month that it would not bring back anyone who was kicked off the site until Twitter established procedures on how to do so. Content Moderation Council.
On Friday, Musk tweeted that the suspended Twitter accounts of comedian Kathy Griffin, Canadian psychologist Jordan Peterson, and conservative Christian news satire website Babylon Bee have been revived. added that no decision has yet been made regarding Trump. He also said “no” when someone asked him on Twitter to restore the account of conspiracy theorist Alex Jones.
In a tweet on Friday, Tesla’s CEO described the company’s new content policy as “free speech, not free reach.”
He explained that tweets deemed to be “negative” or containing “hate” would be allowed on the site, but would only appear to users who searched specifically. There will be no ads or other revenues on Twitter because of disabling ciphering,” Musk said.
This story has been corrected to reflect that the yes vote is 51.8% instead of 51.2%.
https://www.mercurynews.com/2022/11/19/musk-to-restore-trump-to-twitter-after-holding-online-poll/ Musk puts Trump back on Twitter after online poll