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Trump ban was right but sets dangerous precedent – Jack Dorsey


Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey has defended his company’s decision to ban President Donald Trump while acknowledging that the move stems from its failure to promote healthy conversations and sets a dangerous precedent.

I believe this was the right decision for Twitter, Dorsey said in a series of 13 posts on his platform, citing ‘extraordinary and untenable’ circumstances after Trump incited a riot at the US Capitol last week, an event that forced the social media company to focus all of its actions on public safety.

German leader Angela Merkel and Mexican President Andres Manuel López Obrador neither an ally of the outgoing US president spoke out against the tech titan’s move.

Twitter’s chief said he did not celebrate or feel pride in the ban which came after the Capitol riot last week.

“I do not celebrate or feel pride in our having to ban @realDonaldTrump from Twitter, or how we got here, offline harm as a result of online speech is demonstrably real, and what drives our policy and enforcement above all, Dorsey said.
He reiterated that removing the president from Twitter was made after ‘a clear warning’ to Mr Trump.

“We made a decision with the best information we had based on threats to physical safety both on and off Twitter, Mr Dorsey said.

He also accepted that the move would have consequences for an open and free internet.

“Having to take these actions fragment the public conversation, they divide us and sets a precedent I feel is dangerous.

The decision to remove users, posts and tweets has been criticised by some for violating first amendment free speech rights.

However, big tech firms generally argue that they are private companies, and not state actors so the law does not apply when they moderate their platforms.

Facebook and YouTube have taken steps to silence the president, while Amazon shut down Parler, an app widely used by his supporters.

Incoming US President-elect Joe Biden has said he wants companies like Facebook and Twitter to do more to take down hate speech and fake news.

He has previously said he wants to repeal Section 230, a law protecting social media companies from being sued for the things people post.


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