On Saturday, Elon Musk unbanned Donald Trump from using Twitter, ending a prohibition that had been in place since a pro-Trump mob invaded the U.S. Capitol on January 6, 2021, just as Congress was about to recognize Joe Biden’s win.
Musk made the statement that evening, after a poll in which he urged Twitter users to indicate their support for restoring Trump’s account by clicking “yes” or “no.” With 51.2% of the vote, “yes” triumphed.
“The conversation is over. Trump will get his job back. Vox Populi, Vox Dei is a Latin term that means “the voice of the people, the voice of God,” according to Musk’s tweet.”
Trump’s account, which had previously seemed to be suspended, soon subsequently resurfaced on the site with all of his prior tweets—more than 59,000 of them—intact. However, originally all of his supporters had vanished.
Even though his account had been restored as of 8:30 p.m. Eastern time on Saturday, it remained unclear if Trump would truly return to Twitter.
Trump launched his bid for the president in 2024 four days before Musk’s online poll.
Trump, who was an unstoppable tweeter before his suspension, has previously claimed that he would not return to Twitter even if his account were to be restored. He has been depending on Truth Social, a far more modest social media platform that he started after being banned from Twitter.
And on Saturday, according to Bloomberg, Trump remarked in a video address to a Republican Jewish organization gathering in Las Vegas that he was aware of Musk’s survey but that he observed “a lot of issues at Twitter.”
“I’ve heard there’s a strong push to return to Twitter as well. I don’t see it because I can’t think of a good reason why, “Trump said, according to Bloomberg. He said, perhaps alluding to the current internal turmoil at Twitter, “It may make it, it may not make it.”
Trump’s potential return to the platform comes in the wake of Musk’s acquisition of Twitter last month, which sparked widespread worries that the site’s billionaire owner would enable the propagation of falsehoods and disinformation. Musk has often stated his opinion that Twitter has become too censorship-heavy for free expression.
The site has been rapidly and haphazardly altered by the millionaire. Many of the 7,500 full-time employees and incalculable numbers of contractors who are in charge of content moderation and other critical duties have been sacked by Musk. A large number of workers, including hundreds of software engineers, resigned as a result of his demand that the remaining staff promise work “very tough.”
The firm was described as being in “disarray” by the New York Times after hundreds of employees submitted their resignations by Thursday night, the deadline Musk imposed for employees to remain or go.
According to Melissa Ingle, a content moderator who was just fired, “it’s incredibly chaotic and the morale is quite bad.” Melissa Ingle spoke to CBS News’ John Dickerson on Friday.
Digitally projected remarks critical of Musk were shown on the side of Twitter’s San Francisco headquarters shortly after the deadline.
One of the statements read, “Musk’s hellscape.” Another added, “Launching to bankruptcy.”
In the wake of the widespread layoffs and staff migration, users have reported witnessing an upsurge in spam and frauds on their feeds and in their direct messages, among other issues. Some engineers who lost their jobs or quit last week forewarned that Twitter would soon become so unstable that it might really collapse.
After his followers stormed the Capitol and the former president urged them to “fight like hell,” Trump’s account to Twitter was terminated two days later. After Trump sent out two tweets that Twitter said raised concerns about the integrity of the election and threatened the inauguration of Vice President Biden, the website shut off his account.
Following the incident on January 6, Trump was also banned from Meta Platforms’ Facebook and Instagram as well as Snap Inc.’s Snapchat. Additionally suspended was his capacity to upload videos to his YouTube page. In January, Facebook plans to take Trump’s account ban under review.
Throughout his presidency, Trump’s use of social media was a huge problem for the most popular social media sites, which have struggled to strike a balance between the public’s desire in hearing from public leaders and concerns about the spread of false information, hate speech, harassment, and incitement to violence.
However, Musk said that Twitter’s move to block Trump was “morally awful” and “very idiotic” in a speech at an auto convention in May.
Musk said earlier this month that the firm would not let anybody who had been banned from the site rejoin until Twitter had developed policies for doing so, including creating a “content moderation committee.” Musk finalized the $44 billion buyout of Twitter in late October.
Musk tweeted on Friday that the comedian Kathy Griffin, Canadian psychologist Jordan Peterson, and the website Babylon Bee, which parodies conservative Christian news, had all had their banned Twitter accounts reopened.
The Tesla CEO said in a tweet on Friday that the new content policy of the firm allowed “freedom of expression, but not freedom of reach.”
He clarified that a “negative” or “hateful” tweet would be permitted on the platform but would be hidden from the feed unless a user actively sought it out. According to Musk, such tweets would also be “demonetized, so no adverts or other money to Twitter.”
Source: CBS News