Jan 30, 2020

Twitter suspends Katie Hopkins' account

Photo: Philip Toscano/PA Images via Getty Images

Twitter suspended Thursday the account of far-right British commentator Katie Hopkins, who President Trump has occasionally retweeted, The Independent reports.

The state of play: Hopkins built a media persona around making extreme Islamophobic and racist comments. The decision to lock her account, which Twitter said was due to a violation of its hateful conduct policy, came after Channel 4 host and anti-racism campaigner Rachel Riley met with representatives from the social media giant to advocate for her ban from the platform.

Go deeper: Trump retweets person who once called for "final solution" on Islamic terrorism

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Twitter sets high bar for taking down deepfakes

Photo illustration: Omar Marques/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

Twitter on Tuesday announced a new policy aimed at discouraging the spread of deepfakes and other manipulated media, but the service will only ban content that threatens people's safety, rights or privacy.

Why it matters: Tech platforms are under pressure to stanch the flow of political misinformation, including faked videos and imagery. Twitter's approach, which covers a wide range of material but sets narrow criteria for deletion, is unlikely to satisfy critics or politicians like Joe Biden and Nancy Pelosi — who have both slammed platforms for allowing manipulated videos of them to spread.

Twitter suspends pro-Bloomberg accounts for spam and "platform manipulation"

Bloomberg rallies in Salt Lake City, Utah on Feb. 20. Photo: George Frey/Getty Images

Twitter has reportedly suspended about 70 accounts posting pro-Bloomberg content, the Los Angeles Times reports.

The big picture: The presidential campaign is paying Instagram, Facebook and Twitter users in California to post messages of support on their personal accounts, the Wall Street Journal reported this week. That effort could "later be deployed nationwide," per WSJ.

Cruz: Twitter should obey sanctions, ban Iran leaders

Photo illustration: Beata Zawrzel/NurPhoto via Getty Images

Republican senators led by Ted Cruz in a letter Thursday suggested Twitter may be violating U.S. sanctions by letting Iranian leaders maintain accounts, which they asked company CEO Jack Dorsey to ban.

The big picture: Twitter has become a major political target for Cruz and other Republicans, who claim the company and other Silicon Valley giants are biased against conservatives and the Trump administration.

"While the First Amendment protects the free speech rights of Americans – and Twitter should not be censoring the political speech of Americans – the Ayatollah enjoys zero protection from the United States Bill of Rights," the senators wrote.