In context: Twitter has a ‘public-interest exception’ policy that lets elected officials violate some of Twitter’s rules without having their tweets removed. The offending tweets are hidden behind a warning and are excluded from Twitter’s recommendation algorithm, but they’re left up on the internet for the sake of public interest.
Twitter will remove Donald Trump’s protections after he leaves office (presumably) on January 20, 2021. Afterward, his tweets will be subject to removal if they’re deemed to violate Twitter’s rules.
Donald Trump was the, uh… inspiration… for this policy.
….These THUGS are dishonoring the memory of George Floyd, and I won’t let that happen. Just spoke to Governor Tim Walz and told him that the Military is with him all the way. Any difficulty and we will assume control but, when the looting starts, the shooting starts. Thank you!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 29, 2020
However, Twitter has clarified that their “approach to world leaders, candidates, and public officials is based on the principle that people should be able to choose to see what their leaders are saying with clear context. … This policy framework applies to current world leaders and candidates for office, and not private citizens when they no longer hold these positions.”
In other words, Trump will soon be subject to the same rules the rest of us are required to follow.
Trump has clashed with Twitter numerous times in the past. In May, he claimed that Twitter was “stifling free speech” after the platform labeled his tweets about mail-in ballots as “unsubstantiated” and incorrect. In the past week, nearly all of his tweets have received a “misleading” or “disputed” label.
THE OBSERVERS WERE NOT ALLOWED INTO THE COUNTING ROOMS. I WON THE ELECTION, GOT 71,000,000 LEGAL VOTES. BAD THINGS HAPPENED WHICH OUR OBSERVERS WERE NOT ALLOWED TO SEE. NEVER HAPPENED BEFORE. MILLIONS OF MAIL-IN BALLOTS WERE SENT TO PEOPLE WHO NEVER ASKED FOR THEM!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) November 7, 2020
It will be interesting to see how Trump reacts to the rules or if he may leave the platform entirely.