Twitter deleted US President Trump’s account last week, citing a risk of violence after his supporters stormed the Capitol.
Twitter Inc CEO Jack Dorsey has said that banning US President Donald Trump from his social media platform after last week’s violence on the U.S. Capitol was the “right move,” but said it was setting a dangerous precedent.
San Francisco-based Twitter last week deleted Trump’s account, which had 88 million subscribers, citing the risk of further violence following the takeover of the Capitol by supporters of the president.
“Having to take these steps fragments the public conversation,” Dorsey said on Twitter. “They divide us. They limit the potential for clarification, redemption, and learning. And sets a precedent that seems dangerous to me: the power that an individual or company has over part of the global public conversation. “
The ban drew criticism from some Republicans who said it stifled the president’s right to free speech. German Chancellor Angela Merkel also warned through a spokesperson that lawmakers, not private companies, should decide on potential barriers to free speech.
In his Twitter feed, Dorsey said that while he was not proud of the ban, “the offline damage resulting from online speech is clearly real, and what drives our policy and enforcement above all else. . “
I’m not celebrating or proud of having to ban @realDonaldTrump from Twitter, or how we got here. After a clear warning, we took this action, we made a decision with the best information we had based on the physical security threats on and off Twitter. Was this correct?
– jack (@jack) January 14, 2021
Even so, he added, “While there are clear and obvious exceptions, I think a ban is a failure on our part to promote healthy conversation.”
Twitter introduced a series of measures over the past year, such as labels, warnings, and distribution restrictions to reduce the need to make decisions about removing content from the service entirely.
“ Healthy ” conversations
Dorsey said he believes these measures can promote more fruitful or “healthy” conversations online and lessen the effects of bad behavior.
The Twitter CEO added that social media company bans on Trump after the violence last week were emboldened by each other’s actions, even if they were uncoordinated. But in the long run, the precedent “will be destructive to the lofty goal and ideals of the open Internet,” he said.
Trump supporters, who have repeatedly made baseless claims contesting Democrat Joe Biden’s victory in the November election, stormed the U.S. Capitol on January 6, trying to end congressional certification of the victory of the electoral college of Biden.
On Wednesday, Trump became the first president in U.S. history to be impeached twice.