Elon Musk reinstates many Twitter accounts, but not Trump’s

Elon Musk, Twitter’s new owner, announced on Friday that his social media platform is reinstating a number of banned accounts, but not the banned account of former President Donald Trump – or at least not yet. 

Musk announced the reinstatement of three accounts in particular: the accounts of Kathy Griffin, Jordan Peterson, and the Babylon Bee.

Peterson and the Babylon Bee were banned, prior to Musk’s Twitter takeover, for statements that they made about transgender people. Griffin, on the other hand, was banned, after Musk’s Twitter takeover, for impersonating Musk.

All three posted messages on Twitter responding to the reinstatement of their accounts. Griffin immediately turned to her usual ways, writing, “Dear Eilon. You f***** up, fool. I’m going downstairs to my basement of heads. You’re up. Xxoo, The Beheader.”

What about Trump?

In his announcement on Friday, Musk said that the “Trump decision has not yet been made.”

Trump was banned from Twitter in the aftermath of the Jan. 6, 2021, Capitol protest, with the social media site claiming that the ban was necessary to prevent further violence. It has been widely expected that Musk would reinstate Trump’s account, which is one of the reasons why the political left lost their minds over Musk’s acquisition of Twitter.

Musk, on Friday, also made it clear that he will not be allowing conservative radio show host Alex Jones back on the platform.

And, one final thing to note is that Musk announced that negative and hateful tweets will be “max deboosted & demonetized” on Twitter. Musk clarified that only the tweet will be “max deboosted & demonetized,” not the whole account.

This was unexpected

Many, particularly on the political right, were taken aback by the fact that Musk hasn’t reinstated Trump’s account and refuses to reinstate Jones’s account. They were also taken aback by the announcement that negative and hateful tweets will essentially be shadowbanned.

This is for multiple reasons including Musk’s prior claim that he is a “free speech absolutist” who acquired Twitter to return free speech to the platform.

Many noted that Musk’s moves here don’t look a lot like free speech. Instead, they argued that it looks more like a continuation of the kind of censorship that took place under Twitter’s previous ownership, only that here it is Musk who gets to determine what speech is allowed and isn’t.

Musk Has yet to respond to the criticism. But, many speculate that his decisions here are likely being significantly motivated by monetary factors.

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