Elon Musk’s poll asks: Should Trump get his Twitter account back? Over 12 million have voted

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Elon Musk, who purchased Twitter in October, posted a poll on Friday, asking the Twitter universe if former President Donald Trump should be allowed back on the social media platform. With less than seven hours left in the poll, as of this writing, over 12 million Twitter users have voted, and Trump is winning with these voters, 52.4% to 47.6%.

Twitter users have, in the past, leaned left, and it is the social media place where journalists and politicos have hung out and chatted nonstop.

“U.S. adult Twitter users are younger and more likely to be Democrats than the general public. Most users rarely tweet, but the most prolific 10% create 80% of tweets from adult U.S. users,” reported the Pew Research Center in 2019. At least some of those journalists and leftist activists say they have left the social media site and taken up social media residency at Mastodon, a new social media company that some people find clunky and hard to use. Those leftists and journalists have predicted Twitter will fail without them, but the Musk poll shows vibrancy and diversity of opinion.

The former overseers of Twitter put a damper on conservative voices by shadow-banning them, which means the system down-ranked them so that few people would see their comments. The former owners blocked Trump’s account on Jan. 8, 2021, writing on the Twitter blog, “After close review of recent Tweets from the @realDonaldTrump account and the context around them — specifically how they are being received and interpreted on and off Twitter — we have permanently suspended the account due to the risk of further incitement of violence.”

The permanent ban of Trump came two days after a surge of protesters went into the U.S. Capitol, causing a delay of the certification of the Electoral College vote that completed the 2020 election of Joe Biden to the presidency.

On the Twitter blog on Jan. 8, 2021, the company justified the ban:

“In the context of horrific events this week, we made it clear on Wednesday that additional violations of the Twitter Rules would potentially result in this very course of action. Our public interest framework exists to enable the public to hear from elected officials and world leaders directly. It is built on a principle that the people have a right to hold power to account in the open,” Twitter wrote.

“However, we made it clear going back years that these accounts are not above our rules entirely and cannot use Twitter to incite violence, among other things. We will continue to be transparent around our policies and their enforcement,” Twitter wrote. 

The tweets that were the final straw for Twitter were posted by Trump on Jan. 8, 2021:

“The 75,000,000 great American Patriots who voted for me, AMERICA FIRST, and MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN, will have a GIANT VOICE long into the future. They will not be disrespected or treated unfairly in any way, shape or form!!!”

Shortly thereafter, Trump tweeted:

“To all of those who have asked, I will not be going to the Inauguration on January 20th.”

Twitter decided those comments had to be viewed as inciting violence: “Due to the ongoing tensions in the United States, and an uptick in the global conversation in regards to the people who violently stormed the Capitol on January 6, 2021, these two Tweets must be read in the context of broader events in the country and the ways in which the President’s statements can be mobilized by different audiences, including to incite violence, as well as in the context of the pattern of behavior from this account in recent weeks. After assessing the language in these Tweets against our Glorification of Violence policy, we have determined that these Tweets are in violation of the Glorification of Violence Policy and the user @realDonaldTrump should be immediately permanently suspended from the service.”

Twitter went on to say that under its glorification of violence policy, the comments “could inspire others to replicate violent acts and determined that they were highly likely to encourage and inspire people to replicate the criminal acts that took place at the U.S. Capitol on January 6, 2021.”

17 COMMENTS

  1. Do bugs have noses? Of course, President Trump should have complete and free US Constitutional communication rights in in this nation like every other citizen here-to-fore.

  2. Why bother having a poll?
    Just reinstate him. This is not a difficult decision.
    .
    The “reasons” for kicking Trump off of Twitter were politically driven, nothing more.

  3. Makes no difference in my life. If it wasn’t for the Karen’s of the world telegraphing what’s got their panties bunched up. Those with a life wouldn’t be subjected to the whining.

  4. Honor the House of Musk: Give the old geezer his account so that he may relieve himself!

    • The first Amendment does not apply to private businesses.

      Go to your job and tell everyone what you actually think of them. And be sure to remind them of your First amendment rights as security walks you out the door.

      Does anyone understand civics anymore?

      • Twitter and the rest of the social media companies are no longer private businesses. They have been working hand in glove with the Biden administration, various agencies (DHS & FBI) and congressional democrats for years to censor / surveil users the democrats want censored / surveiled. As such, they are no longer private. Rather, they have willingly turned themselves into defacto arms of the government. And in doing so, they have presented themselves belly up, begging to be regulated as utilities under Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act. In short, they’re toast. Cheers –

    • Whether Elon believes in the 1st Amendment or not, the 1st Amendment does not apply to twitter. If “shadow banning” or not approving a comment was a 1st Amendment issue, then I’d have legal standing with MRAK (who routinely will not publish my comments, despite there being no threats to others, inappropriate language, etc.). Elon is going to have to decide what he wants for Twitter as a business though, and while it may be considered “woke” that run of the mill advertisers want to run the risk of having their ads pop up with tweets that are hateful, false, target a minority population, etc. Elon can certainly choose to run an unmoderated twitter, but it may not make any money. First and foremost, he’s going to have to reassemble a rather large technical team of folks to keep the platform operating. (There are plenty of unregulated/uncensored forums available, but they don’t seem to make any money.) And former President Trump will need to decide what is more important to him (should his Twitter account be reinstated): increased visibility on Twitter or abandoning his struggling platform, Truth.

      • If Twitter, or any other social media platform wants to enjoy the protections under Section 230 of the CDA, they cannot moderate content in the manner they do. That turns them from a utility into a content provider. And, then the Federal Government does get involved for licensing, etc…
        .
        Either you stick strictly to your rules for moderating content, or you moderate it per editorial guidance. If you choose the latter, it turns you into the equivalent of a TV or Radio station, the Federal Government is involved, and the 1st Amendment applies.

  5. Trump said nothing bad, he just stated the truth. Liberals have difficulty with the truth. Besides, if you don’t like what someone is Tweeting, don’t read it.

    • Jim, MRAKfan above says, “it may be considered “woke” that run of the mill advertisers want to run the risk of having their ads pop up with tweets that are hateful, false,…” Then, your comment says, “Liberals have difficulty with the truth.” So, its obvious the fundamental question, as posed by the Roman governor Pontius Pilate, is “what is truth.” The 1st-Amendment was not added to protect innocuous speech but rather offensive and inflammatory speech. That said, the platform is privately owned and the 1st-Amendment should never apply to it.

  6. CBS “News” announced on their nightly “news” that they are banning Twitter. With Miguel Almaguer from NBC “News” being banned from NBC for reporting news that the “news” organization didn’t approve of. It makes you wonder if these “news” organizations spell news like the rest of us or do they use the longer spelling of p-r-o-p-a-g-a-n-d-a

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