What are the rules on Twitter? And for whom? Such questions have arisen after US President Trump has been permanently deleted from the Twitter platform. One example in particular shows the platform’s double standard …
The end of patience
On January 9th, Twitter decided that it would no longer be available as a mouthpiece for the US President.
The tweets that led to this decision were “by far not his worst,” says US magazine Wired.
Trump’s last words
What did Trump write? The now deleted tweets here in full:
“The 75,000,000 great American Patriots who voted for me, AMERICA FIRST and MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN will have a GIGANTIC VOICE well into the future. You will not be treated disrespectfully or unfairly in any way!!!”
“To everyone who asked me, I will not go to the January 20th inauguration.”
According to Twitter, they saw “the risk of further incitement to violence” with a view to the events at the Capitol in Washington and had anticipated this by deleting the account.
Free speech for radicals
The statements of the incumbent Iranian President Ali Khamenei are interpreted much more generously than with Trump. On June 3, 2018 one reads on the account @khamenei_ir of the president with around 880,000 followers:
“Our stance against Israel is the same that we’ve always taken. #Israel is a malignant cancer in the region of western Asia that needs to be removed and eradicated: it is possible and it will happen. 7/31/91 #GreatReturnMarch”
The post of the top Iranian leader has been online for two and a half years – and despite the clearly visible controversy in the comments section, it has not been deleted. So far, there is no explanation from Twitter boss Jack Dorsey.
Twitter in need of explanation
After US President Trump was banished from the platform at the beginning of January, the questions have arisen again whether Khamenei would not have deserved censorship much sooner, and which standards actually apply at Twitter. A post by Khamenei about “completely untrustworthy” vaccines against Corona was deleted immediately at the beginning of January.
“The Ayatollah can tweet, but Trump cannot. That says a lot about the people who run Twitter,” said Republican Senator Lindsey Graham. For years the leader of the revolution has been spouting “unhindered propaganda against the USA, Israel and the West as a whole”. Even tweets calling for the “eradication of Israel” are still accessible.