Trump slams Twitter as 'out of control' after social media giant censors four of his election tweets in 5 hours
Starting Thursday night, Twitter prevented users from retweeting them, labeling them: 'Some or all of the content shared in this Tweet is disputed and might be misleading about an election or other civic process."
President Donald Trump said Friday morning that Twitter was "out of control" after the social media giant censored and labeled four more of his election-related tweets as "disputed" and potentially "misleading." Twitter censored four of the president's tweets within five hours starting Thursday night, preventing users from retweeting them claiming "some or all of the content shared in this Tweet is disputed and might be misleading about an election or other civic process."
Twitter is out of control, made possible through the government gift of Section 230!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) November 6, 2020
The microblogging platform has marked numerous tweets by the president since Election Day on Tuesday. That said, users may still be able to "quote" the tweet if they add their own comment.
Three of the four tweets labeled were clips of a White House press briefing Thursday night, which saw Trump lash out at the Democrats for alleged voter fraud. The president declared he'd already "won" the election and alleged that it was being stolen from him, prompting several TV stations to cut away from his address. In his "out of control" tweet, Trump insisted that Section 230 was a "government gift" to social media giants that gave them the ability to moderate content on their platforms with impunity. In fact, he called for the law to be repealed in early October.
That said, Trump's tweet came just hours before his Democratic challenger Joe Biden appeared to overtake him in Georgia, a key swing state.
In the first clip censored overnight, Trump argued that "illegal votes" could "steal the election from us." In the second clip, he said he would "never allow the corruption to steal such an important election." In the third, he accused Detroit and Philadelphia of being "two of the most corrupt political places anywhere in our country" and said Democrats in Pennsylvania were "trying obviously to commit fraud."
In the fourth tweet that came early Friday, the President declared that he would "easily" win if only "legal" votes were counted and that "votes accepted during this period must be determined to be ILLEGAL VOTES."
I easily WIN the Presidency of the United States with LEGAL VOTES CAST. The OBSERVERS were not allowed, in any way, shape, or form, to do their job and therefore, votes accepted during this period must be determined to be ILLEGAL VOTES. U.S. Supreme Court should decide!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) November 6, 2020
Speaking to Business Insider, a Twitter spokesperson claimed that they had "placed a warning on these Tweets for making potentially misleading claims about the election process. This action is in line with our Civic Integrity Policy, and as is standard with this warning, we will significantly restrict engagements on these Tweets."
"Our teams continue to monitor Tweets that attempt to spread misleading information relating to the election. We will remain vigilant and continue working to protect the integrity of the election conversation on Twitter," they added.
Furthermore, the tech giant also labeled five of the President's tweets on Wednesday as "disputed" and potentially "misleading," when he wrote of Michigan's vote count and the apparent "ballot dumps" that gave his opponent a lead.
There is a general consensus among lawmakers on both sides of the aisle that Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act needs to be revised. On October 28, the CEOs of Facebook, Google, and Twitter were summoned to a virtual Senate hearing on the controversial law. Republicans, during the hearing, brought up the tech firms' steps to fact-check posts by the president, suggesting censorship. When asked about stripping back Section 230, Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey and Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg said such a move would harm free expression, with Dorsey claiming it could potentially "collapse how we communicate on the Internet."