Twitter may get the last laugh and ban Donald Trump permanently if he losesPosted by Robert Leonard / November 6, 2020
Twitter’s longtime feud with Donald Trump may be nearly over. If Trump loses the election, then he will no longer be protected from a permanent ban. That means if he continues to violate Twitter’s policies, he could be permanently banned.
Before the election, Twitter locked the New York Post’s account after the publication posted totally unverified and almost-certainly fraudulent. Twitter will not unlock the account until the posts are removed.
Earlier this year, Twitter waged a war against misinformation––or, against the president––by attaching another label to the President’s tweets. This time, Trump tweeted out a doctored video, which Twitter labeled as manipulated. The war started when Trump complained about Twitter, and then he signed an executive order targeting social media, which, according to the New York Times, might actually backfire on him. Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey warned that the company would continue to fact check any information related to elections.
Meanwhile, in Facebook-land, the platform has removed a Trump post stating that the flu is more dangerous than COVID. They are also taking action to stop the spread of the QAnon conspiracy theory by banning it on the platform. Hopefully this means that QAnon won’t impact the election.
NAACP president Derrick Johnson has called Facebook a “threat to democracy.” He is one of the leaders the ongoing Facebook boycott, and he also said the boycotters won’t quit until Facebook makes changes.
Despite the tremendous pressure from inside and outside the company, Facebook has so far refused to change its policy on (not) fact-checking political ads. Earlier this year, a series of advertisers have added their weight to the pressure campaign: Patagonia, North Face, REI, and Ben & Jerry. Now, Verizon is pulling their money out. The more traditionally “hippie” companies like Ben & Jerries are no surprise, but Verizon isn’t generally known for its political stances, so this could be huge.