Elon Musk took to Twitter on Monday and addressed the question that’s on everybody’s mind: Will he permit Donald Trump back on the social media site?
“If I had a dollar for every time someone asked me if Trump is coming back on this platform, Twitter would be minting money!” the new Twitter boss tweeted on Monday.
Musk last week completed his $US44 billion acquisition of Twitter. Upon taking control of the company, he began cleaning house by firing its top executives, the New York Post reports.
In the weeks and months leading up to his purchase of Twitter, Musk, who calls himself a “free speech absolutist”, pledged to reinstate Trump’s account.
But doing so may come at a steep price.
The Wall Street Journal reported last week that several top brands were prepared to cut ties with Twitter if Musk followed through on his intent to allow Trump back onto the site.
Musk, who appears mindful of what an advertiser exodus might mean for his company’s bottom line, tried to calm jittery Madison Avenue last week, pledging that he would not allow Twitter to descend into a “free-for-all hellscape”.
Trump was banned from Twitter, his preferred method of communicating to the masses, in the wake of the events at the US Capitol on January 6, 2021.
Since Musk assumed the helm of Twitter, prominent celebrities and athletes, including basketball superstar LeBron James, have grown alarmed at the proliferation of hate speech and racial slurs.
Musk responded by referring James to a thread by Yoel Roth, Twitter’s head of safety and integrity.
“Over the last 48 hours, we’ve seen a small number of accounts post a ton of Tweets that include slurs and other derogatory terms,” Roth tweeted on Saturday.
“To give you a sense of scale: More than 50,000 Tweets repeatedly using a particular slur came from just 300 accounts.”
Roth continued: “Nearly all of these accounts are inauthentic. We’ve taken action to ban the users involved in this trolling campaign — and are going to continue working to address this in the days to come to make Twitter safe and welcoming for everyone.”
Nicholas Fuentes, a white nationalist who was banned from Twitter last year, tried to get back on the social media site now that it’s owned by Musk — only to be turned away by the platform once again.
Musk himself caused a stir when he posted a link to a conspiracy theory surrounding last week’s assault of Paul Pelosi, the 82-year-old husband of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi.
He deleted the tweet in the face of intense backlash.
Trump said on Friday he’s glad Twitter is in Musk’s “sane hands” — but didn’t mention any prospect of returning to the platform as he touted his own social networking app, Truth Social.
“I am very happy that Twitter is now in sane hands, and will no longer be run by Radical Left Lunatics and Maniacs that truly hate our country,” the 45th president wrote in his Truth Social post.
On Friday afternoon, Must tweeted that “Twitter will be forming a content moderation council with widely diverse viewpoints,” adding that “No major content decisions or account reinstatements will happen before that council convenes.”
This article originally appeared in the New York Post and has been reproduced with permission
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