Elon Musk Offers General Amnesty to Suspended Twitter Accounts

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Elon Musk Offers General Amnesty to Suspended Twitter Accounts – Elon Musk has announced a general amnesty for suspended Twitter accounts, prompting concerns that “superspreaders of hate” will return to the social media platform. The new owner of Twitter announced that an amnesty for blocked users will begin the following week after the majority of votes in a poll on his account supported the move. Accounts belonging to Steve Bannon, Katie Hopkins, and David Duke, the former grand wizard of the Ku Klux Klan, are among those suspended by Twitter.

Musk had launched a poll on Wednesday asking whether all accounts should be granted amnesty if they have not “broken the law or engaged in egregious spam.” Musk did not specify the laws he was referring to. The poll received more than 3.1 million votes, with 72% in favor of amnesty. Musk announced the result via Twitter: “The people have spoken. Amnesty begins next week.” He added “Vox Populi, Vox Dei,” a Latin phrase meaning “the voice of the people is the voice of God.”

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Musk’s announcement came days after he reinstated Trump’s account along with those of Canadian psychologist Jordan Peterson, former professional kickboxer Andrew Tate – whose extreme misogynistic views led to a Twitter ban in 2017 – and the unlocking of the account for US rapper Ye, formerly Kanye West, who was sanctioned for posting anti-Semitic comments last month. The Center for Countering Digital Hate, a campaign organization, stated that “superspreaders” of hateful content would benefit from the change and urged advertisers, many of whom have already ceased spending on the platform, to cease funding Twitter.

“Superspreaders of hate, abuse and harassment will be the only people to benefit from this latest decision by Twitter,” said Imran Ahmed, chief executive of CCDH. “The choice for advertisers has never been starker: stick around and back Elon Musk, or protect their brands and ensure their marketing dollars aren’t used to enable the spread of hate, abuse and disinformation.” Angelo Carusone, president of US campaign group Media Matters, which monitors “conservative misinformation,” said reversing the suspensions would turn Twitter into an “engine of radicalization.”

This week, Musk ruled out the return of conspiracy theorist Alex Jones, who has promoted the false claim that the Sandy Hook school shooting was a hoax, stating that he has “no mercy” for those who profit from the deaths of children for personal gain. Milo Yiannopoulos, a right-wing writer, and David Icke, a former BBC presenter, are among the other Twitter users who have been banned. Musk previously stated that there would be no account reinstatements until the newly announced content moderation council held its first meeting. However, the CEO of Tesla stated that human rights groups “broke the deal” when they urged advertisers to stop spending on the platform.

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