Dec 4, 2022 - Politics & Policy

Elon Musk explains why Ye was suspended from Twitter

Elon Musk appearing via video link on a screen in Doha, Qatar, in June 2022.

Elon Musk appearing via video link on a screen in Doha, Qatar, in June 2022. Photo: Christopher Pike/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Elon Musk said during a Twitter Spaces Saturday that it was his decision to suspend Ye from Twitter after the rapper posted an image of a swastika inside a Star of David.

What they're saying: "Because at a certain point, you have to say what is incitement to violence," Musk said. "Because that is against the law in the U.S., you can't just have a 'let's go murder someone club,' that's not actually legal."

  • "It is important people know, okay, that was my decision," Musk said.
  • Musk added that the context surrounding Ye's tweet helped him make the suspension decision.
  • "You can say like, okay, let's look for added context outside of Twitter to say, well, what's this meant in a friendly way? Well, ok, no, he's saying that he likes Hitler and other things," Musk added.
  • He also agreed with another speaker's statement that a swastika posted with historical context regarding WWII wouldn't cause an account to be suspended.

The big picture: Ye posted the image after going on an antisemitic rant in an interview with a conspiracy theorist.

  • Ye's account was previously restricted in October over other antisemitic tweets, though it was reinstated after Musk completed his $44 billion acquisition of Twitter.
  • It's unknown how long Ye's account will be suspended from the social media platform, but Musk has previously said permanent bans "should be extremely rare."
  • Musk previously said Ye's account was suspended for violating the social media site's rule against incitement to violence.
  • Musk joined the Twitter Spaces session for a Q&A following the Friday release of "Twitter Files," a cache of documents showing some of the conversations Twitter had regarding limiting access to a New York Post story about Hunter Biden's laptop in October 2020.

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