Elon Musk Begins Suspending Journalists’ Accounts On Twitter

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Twitter is starting to issue what is effectively “critical bans” on several journalists and reporters that cover the social media platform’s new head, Elon Musk. According to The Verge, the list include Ryan Mac of The New York TimesCNN’s Donie O’Sullivan, The Washington Post’s Drew Harwell, The Intercept’s Micha Lee, Mashable’s Matt Binder, Aaron Rupar, and Tony Webster.

As for the reason behind their suspensions, It is apparently because all those journalists on the list had shared the live location of Musk’s private jet, and the creator and owner of Tesla was none too happy about it. For that matter, the bans are also a part of the social network’s new privacy policy, whereby it prohibits the sharing of “live location information, including information shared on Twitter directly or links to 3rd-party URL(s) of travel routes.”

Ella Irwin, head of trust and safety at Twitter, confirmed the ban of these accounts and said that the platform will suspend any accounts that violate its privacy policies and put other users at risk. “We don’t make exceptions to this policy for journalists or any other accounts.”

Musk himself later responded to the ban with a tweet of his own, responding to a tweet on the situation. “They posted my exact real-time location, basically assassination coordinates, in (obvious) direct violation of Twitter terms of service,” Musk’s tweet said. Once again, the tweet was in response to the sharing of links to his private jet’s location, affectionately dubbed the “ElonJet”.

Since Musk’s takeover of Twitter in October, the state of the social media platform has been nothing short of a rolling dumpster fire of epic proportions. His plan to charge a monthly US$8 (~RM35) subscription fee to users – US$11 (~RM48) for iOS users – for the pleasure of getting the blue checkmark that verifies the authenticity of users, was suspended after a series of high-profile impersonations emerged. This month, it relaunched the service, adding a gold checkmark this time around.

Needless to say, Musk’s bans have not gone down well and as expected, the news platforms of the respective journalist have voiced their discontent against the man’s actions, with CNN releasing a statement, ironically, on the social media platform itself.

(Source: The Verge, Twitter Policy)

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