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President Donald Trump has already had his Twitter account repeatedly censored and now the social media platform confirmed there will be more.
If the president loses his reelection bid and Democratic nominee Joe Biden is sworn in in 2021, Trump’s Twitter account will no longer receive “special protections” beginning on January 20th, the company confirmed according to a Bloomberg report.
The president reportedly receives a “world-leader” status protection on Twitter which means that any tweets that violate the company’s rules on offensive or misleading content are flagged with a warning but not removed. But if he leaves office in January, those exemptions would no longer apply.
Trump’s tweets would be subject to the same rules as regular users at that point and can be removed instead of just labeled. His account would also be subject to temporary freezes and possibly a ban for multiple violations.
“A critical function of our service is providing a place where people can openly and publicly respond to their leaders and hold them accountable,” a Twitter spokesman said in a statement, according to Bloomberg.
“With this in mind, there are certain cases where it may be in the public’s interest to have access to certain tweets, even if they would otherwise be in violation of our rules,” the spokesman added.
Twitter’s world leaders policy, and what it calls a “public interest interstitial,” is used for accounts that belong to elected and other leaders, allowing offending tweets to remain on the platform while restricting their reach with a warning label and by preventing them from being shared or liked.
“It’s preserving a record of what is said in the public interest,” Twitter’s top lawyer Vijaya Gadde said earlier this year.
Several of Trump’s tweets have been flagged by Twitter this week with labels explaining that he had shared content that was “disputed and might be misleading about an election or other civic process.” While the social media platforms overflowed with political commentary as election results came in on Tuesday, it was the president’s remarks that once again triggered the censors into labeling his post as “misleading” content.
Social media platforms flag Trump’s tweet saying Democrats are trying to steal the election https://t.co/IUGSCCM0NC
— Conservative News (@BIZPACReview) November 4, 2020
Twitter immediately flagged and restricted Trump’s tweet on his opponents “trying to STEAL the Election,” and later came to its own defense, citing its “Civic Integrity Policy.”
Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey, along with Google CEO Sundar Pichai and Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg faced the wrath of Republican senators last month during a Senate Commerce Committee hearing as they were grilled over blatant and repeated censoring of the president and others.
“Big tech interfered against President Trump before Election Day, and they are now continuing that interference in the days after as they silence the president on their platforms,” Samantha Zager, the deputy national press secretary for the Trump campaign, said, according to The New York Times.
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