Twitter suspends multiple journalists who were covering Elon Musk
- Twitter suspended several journalist accounts on Thursday.
- Many of the affected writers had been writing about or criticizing Elon Musk during the previous days.
- Musk tweeted on Thursday that the suspensions were linked to the tracking and monitoring of his private jet.
Twitter suspended several accounts belonging renowned journalists who were covering Elon Musk’s tenure on the social media platform.
Among the affected accounts was Donie O’SullivanCNN Drew HarwellThe Washington Post, independent journalists Aaron Rupar & Keith Olbermann, Tony Webster, The New York Times Ryan Mac, and other writers on Twitter and tech.
Rupar said to Insider that he wasn’t sure why his account was suddenly suspended. On Thursday, a notice was posted at the top his account stating that he had been “permanently suspend” and that he was restricted to read only mode. This meant that he was unable to DM or tweet.
He said, “That’s all the information I have from Twitter, no email, and no information about what rule might I have broken.”
Insider asked for comment from Musk but was not immediately answered by a representative of Twitter.
The deluge of suspensionsOne day later Twitter suspended the account of 20-year-old student Jack SweeneyThe tool automatically posted updates about Musk’s private jet’s current location. It was created by, and threatened legal action against him. Soon, the company followed. changed its rulesTo forbid posting a person’s “live location”.
Musk suggested that the reporter suspensions could also be related to the suspension of private jets on Thursday evening. Musk, a billionaire CEO respondedA user tweeted that they had confirmed that “about half” the suspended accounts had posted links on the jet tracker.
Musk wrote that the same doxxing rules apply for ‘journalists” as to everyone else.
—Elon Musk (@elonmusk) December 16, 2022
Some of the suspended journalists had previously tweeted @ElonJet’s presence on Mastodon, a social-media platform that has been marketed as an alternative to Twitter. Twitter also suspended the account for Mastodon on Thursday.
Rupar, however, told Insider that Rupar didn’t believe that he had tweeted anything or retweeted anything regarding the ongoing private jet saga. Nor did he think he had posted any material that would have violated copyright law — another cause for suspension. Rupar did however tweet criticalally about Musk the night before his account had been suspended, he stated.
“That leaves me inferring that it was something critical that I posted about Elon,” he stated of the reason for his suspension. “Maybe that was why I did not receive any information on Twitter; they are unlikely to say that.”
Micah Lee is a journalist covering technology at The Intercept. He told Insider that he believes that he was suspended for believing he posted about Twitter suspending its competitor, Mastodon. Lee stated that he had not received any notice from the company explaining the company’s decision.
NBC News reporter Ben CollinsAs of Thursday evening, there was a list of at least eight accounts that had been suspended. Nearly all of them had been writing critical articles about Musk on Twitter in the days before their suspension.
Musk’s continuing backtracking against his promise to be a “reliable” leader in the space industry is evidenced by the suspensions.free speech absolutist.”However, a Thursday night tweet response was received. MuskThey maintained that the suspensions were not prompted in part by criticism of media coverage.
He wrote, “Criticizing my all day is fine. But doxxing my real time location and endangering me family is not.”
The flight data Musk is trying to keep off Twitter is available online to anyoneRelatively easy to track.
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