Twitter comes under fire for Trump's tweets — again
Jack Dorsey. Photo: Richard Drew / AP
Twitter has been defending its choices not to interfere with Donald Trump's tweets for quite a while now—like it did last week after he retweeted anti-Muslim videos—but many critics are growing frustrated with the company's stance.
What happened: On Wednesday, Trump retweeted anti-Muslim videos posted by Jayda Fransen, the deputy leader of Britain First, an ultranationalist group. Though Twitter originally said that it's not taking down the videos because they are newsworthy and of public interest, it issued a correction the following day, clarifying that it was because the company's policy for media permits them.
- As The Verge journalist Casey Newton points out, the change in explanation for keeping the videos has now undermined the credibility of the company's communications team.
Between the lines: A growing number of users are no longer buying the company's excuses for not penalizing Trump for his tweets. Some are even openly asking Twitter and CEO Jack Dorsey whether the real reasons are the company's need to keep Trump using the service (Dorsey denies this), the huge amount of traffic and attention they bring to the service, and because he's the U.S. president, giving him more leeway in what he posts.
Bigger picture: Twitter is caught in a larger debate over what kind of editorial role social networks have in moderating the content their users post on their platforms.