Musk announces a pardon for the banned Twitter accounts after the vote



In this file photo taken March 9, 2020, SpaceX founder Elon Musk speaks during Satellite 2020 at the Washington Convention Center in Washington, DC.  - France Press agency
In this file photo taken March 9, 2020, SpaceX founder Elon Musk speaks during Satellite 2020 at the Washington Convention Center in Washington, DC. – France Press agency

SAN FRANCISCO: Elon Musk said Thursday that several people have previously been suspended Twitter The accounts will be allowed to return to the platform after a large number of users who responded to an informal poll conducted by the new owner voted in favor of the move.

The announcement comes as Musk faces opposition because his content moderation standards are subject to his personal whims, with decisions to reinstate accounts for some accounts but not others.

“People have spoken. The amnesty starts next week,” Musk wrote on Twitter in response to the poll.

He added “Vox Populi, Vox Dei,” repeating a Latin aphorism that “the people’s voice is the voice of God” he used when talking about other polls on Twitter.

Of the 3.16 million people who answered Musk’s question on Wednesday, 72.4% said Twitter should allow commenting. accounts back on Twitter as long as they don’t break laws or engage in “egregious spam,” Musk wrote.

This was the same type of informal “yes/no” poll of Twitter users that Musk devised to decide in favor of bringing former President Donald Trump back to the platform.

Trump’s Twitter account was reinstated on Saturday after a narrow majority of respondents supported the move.

Twitter polls are open to all users, unscientific, and potentially targeted by fake accounts and bots.

Moreover, while Musk has 118 million followers, many of his 450 million monthly active Twitter users may have never seen the poll question.

Issuing a blanket pardon for suspended accounts would likely unnerve government authorities who have closely watched Musk’s handling of hate speech since he bought the influential platform for $44 billion.

It could also scare away Apple and Google, tech giants who have the power to ban Twitter from their mobile app stores over content concerns.

Trump was banned from the podium early last year for his role in the Jan. 6 attack on the US Capitol by a mob of his supporters seeking to overturn the results of the 2020 election.

‘No Mercy’

Musk’s reinstatement of Trump came on the heels of other banned accounts, including a conservative parody site and a psychiatrist who broke Twitter’s rules on transgender-identifying language.

The CEO of Tesla and SpaceX has said conspiracy theorist Alex Jones will not return to Twitter and will remain banned from the platform.

Musk said Sunday that he has “no mercy on anyone who uses infant deaths for gain, politics or fame” because of his own experience with the death of his first child.

Jones has been ordered to pay hundreds of millions of dollars in compensation for his lies about the 2012 Sandy Hook elementary school shooting that left 26 people dead, most of them children.

Musk, who closed the Twitter takeover in late October, has not made clear whether the bans that will be lifted through balloting are permanent or temporary suspensions.

The future of content moderation on Twitter has become an urgent concern, as major advertisers walked away from the site after a botched relaunch earlier this month saw fake accounts proliferate, causing embarrassment.

Meanwhile, the teams responsible for keeping the nefarious activities off site have been decimated, victims of Musk-led layoffs that have seen half of all employees leave the company.

John Wehbe, a media professor at Northeastern University, speculated that all of the chaos may be because Musk is seeking to “buy himself time.”

“The regulators are definitely going to follow him, both in Europe and possibly the United States … And so a lot of what he’s doing is trying to frame those fights,” Wehbe said.


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