August 15, 2022
Elon Musk Says Will Reverse Twitter Ban On Former US President Donald Trump

Billionaire Elon Musk said on Tuesday that he will reverse Twitter’s ban on former US President Donald Trump when he buys the social media platform, a clear sign of Musk’s intention to cut moderation of the site.

Musk, the world’s richest man and the chief executive of Tesla, has made a deal of $ 44 billion (about Rs 3,37,465 crore) to buy Twitter. He has called himself a “free speech autocrat” but gave few specific details of his plans.

Musk is expected to become the temporary CEO of Twitter after the deal closes, Reuters previously reported, according to a source familiar with the matter.

The question of reinstating Trump is being seen as a test of how far Musk will go to bring about change.

Musk, speaking at the Financial Times Future of the Car conference, said that he and Twitter co-founder Jack Dorsey believe permanent bans should be “extremely rare” and reserved for accounts that use bots. operate or spread spam.

Musk said the decision to ban Trump heightened Trump’s views among people on the political right, and he called the ban “morally wrong and flat-out stupid.”

The suspension of Trump’s account, which had more than 88 million followers, silenced his primary megaphone before the end of his term and followed years of debate over how social media companies should moderate the accounts of powerful global leaders.

Trump was permanently suspended from Twitter shortly after the January 6 riots at the US Capitol. Twitter cited “the risk of further inciting violence” in its decision.

Musk has also said that the forum should limit speech as required by law, and he told an EU official on Monday that EU policy was “absolutely aligned” with his own thinking, referring to a new law. Which imposes heavy fines on companies that do not control illegal content such as advertising targeted at children.

‘must be everywhere’

Conservatives, who have accused San Francisco-based Twitter of bias against right-wing views, have cheered the prospect of Trump’s return.

“He (Trump) should be everywhere,” Republican Senator Rick Scott told reporters when asked about Musk’s comments. “We shouldn’t have social media companies restricting people’s ability to get their message out.”

Democrats have said a possible resumption of Trump could pose a threat to democracy, although some expect Trump’s repeated tweets could upset their base and vote in November’s midterm congressional elections. .

Twitter declined to comment.

Trump previously told Fox News that if allowed he would not return to Twitter, his own social media app, Truth Social, a Twitter-like platform, launched on the Apple App Store in late February and in which users post “true” instead. of tweets.

Trump revised his message on the new platform after a slow start, posting about 50 times, mostly in the past week, to his 2.7 million followers. When he was president, he made an average of 18 tweets a day.

There was no immediate comment from a Trump spokesman.

Trump is the chairman of the company that owns Truth Social, which is merging with the blank-check acquisition firm Digital World Acquisitions.

White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki said on Tuesday that it was up to the company to decide whether to ban Twitter from Trump. He said the Biden administration wants online platforms to protect freedom of speech, but also ensure they are not platforms for propaganda.

During the conference, Musk said the deal to acquire Twitter could be done “in the best-case scenario” in two to three months.

Earlier on Tuesday, Twitter shares fell to a level that indicated the stock market believed it was unlikely that Musk would acquire for $44 billion, as he had originally agreed. .

Musk’s decision to go after Twitter worried some Tesla investors and put pressure on the stock. Musk said on Tuesday that he would stay at Tesla as long as I could be useful.

© Thomson Reuters 2022

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