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Civil rights groups oppose Trump’s reinstatement on Twitter

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A The platform’s accountability group has called out Elon Musk for breaking his word by reinstating previously banned accounts, including former President Donald Trump, without a straightforward process. Free Press, a media and technology advocacy organization, released a statement saying Musk broke his promise to create a content moderation council with input from the civil rights community and groups targeted by violence. fueled by hatred.

He also reportedly agreed to only allow previously de-platformed people to come back to the app after adopting a transparent process. But Musk flew those commitments out the window and reinstated the former president after the results of a Twitter poll. Almost two years after being banned from the platform, Trump is back on the Bird app.

The groups see Trump’s reinstatement without any real process as a sign that Musk cannot be trusted.

Free Press co-CEO Jessica González made it clear that Musk failed to honor clear agreements he made with civil rights groups weeks earlier.

“Musk’s reinstatement of Trump’s account involved no clear process but relied on the results of a flimsy Twitter poll asking Musk supporters to decide the former president’s fate,” Gonzalez said. “Musk made this reckless decision without convening the new council he promised to protect Twitter users from hate and misinformation and prevent advertisers from leaving the platform. As far as I know, this new council does not exist. It’s just one of many bad-faith promises Musk has made to civil rights leaders and then spurned. ”

The NAACP echoed a similar sentiment.

“In Elon Musk’s Twittersphere, you can incite an insurrection at the United States Capitol, which has resulted in multiple deaths, and still be allowed to spew hate speech and violent conspiracies on his platform. “, Johnson said. said in a press release. “If Elon Musk continues to run Twitter like this, using rotten polls that don’t represent the American people and the needs of our democracy, God help us all.”

Prior to Trump’s reinstatement, NAACP Chairman Derrick Johnson said Twitter must pledge never to reinstate Trump, calling him a “superspreader” of hate and misinformation.

Moderation and accountability remain a concern on Twitter and other platforms.

The president continued his constant lie. There is no reason to believe that he, or anyone using his account, would have a change in behavior. As Time noted in October, Trump used Twitter as a platform for intimidation. He also regularly lied to inflame his base, undermining the very political system he claimed he wanted to lead.

Musk announced a new policy to tackle hate speech after firing the content moderation team that tracked abuse on the platform, the exact opposite of what civil rights and peace groups technology have asked. Earlier this year, the Change the Term coalition launched a “Fix the Feed” campaign to urge big tech to tackle hate on their platforms.

Facebook recently announced that he would stop verifying Trump’s comments and statements now that he is officially a presidential candidate. The platform does not fact-check political candidates, raising concerns ahead of the 2024 election.

Musk also reinstated previously banned accounts belonging to controversial Canadian psychologist Jordan Peterson and conservative site Babylon Bee. Comedian Kathy Griffin was recently banned for allegedly impersonating Musk.

Trump on Twitter: “Thanks but no thanks.”

At this time, Trump has said he will not be returning to the site choosing to stay on Truth Social. But the account, its followers, and its reach are available for use. Trump’s verified Twitter account had 72.4 million followers at the time this article was written on Sunday morning. Even if he chooses not to return, anyone in his orbit could gain access to the massive platform.

Trump was first banned from the site two days after the January 6 attack on the US Capitol. Twitter cited the “risk of further incitement to violence at the time”. According Reuters, just over 15 million, out of the hundreds of millions who use the site, voted in the poll. Supporters of Trump’s reinstatement won by a very narrow margin.

“But it’s not just Twitter’s advertisers and revenue that Musk’s bad faith moves have put at risk,” Gonzalez continued. “It is communities of color, political dissidents and other threatened groups and individuals who are too often the target of hatred for Trump and authoritarians and white supremacists like him. Musk’s willingness to betray civil rights leaders is a sure sign that Twitter hell is already here.

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