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“The right decision” is how Twitter director Jack Dorsey characterized the ban on President Trump from his social media platform. But he lamented that the movement was divisive, setting a precedent that Dorsey said is dangerous for a “free and open global Internet.”
In his 13-tweet thread, Dorsey said the “offline harm” that Trump’s tweets posed led the company to kick the president out of Twitter.
Twitter banned Trump after the uprising at the US Capitol last week. The company blamed a pattern of behavior that persistently violated their rules. Facebook and Snapchat followed suit and have banned Trump’s accounts. YouTube suspended the president for at least a week.
Dorsey insisted that the Internet should not be controlled by a single person or company. This was the first time the Twitter director spoke publicly about removing Trump from his platform. In his meandering Twitter thread, he said that a decentralized alternative like Bitcoin, the digital currency, would be the best option for a free and open internet.
He pointed to the Bitcoin model as one that demonstrates “a basic Internet technology that is not controlled or influenced by a single person or entity. This is what the Internet will be, and over time more of it will be.”
I’m not celebrating or feeling proud that we should ban @realDonaldTrump from Twitter, or how we got here. After a clear warning that we would take this action, we made a decision with the best information we had, based on threats to physical security both on and off Twitter. Was this correct?
– jack (@jack) January 14, 2021
Explaining his decision to ban President Trump from Twitter, he said the ability of companies to close user accounts “would be detrimental to the noble purposes and ideals of the open Internet.”
He said, “This moment in time may require this dynamic, but in the long run it will be detrimental to the noble purpose and ideals of the open Internet. A business that makes a business decision to moderate itself is different from a government, which removes access but can still feel very much the same. “
Opponents of other big social media companies believe that Big Tech and specifically Twitter and Facebook need more controls and balance, and they need to take more control over malicious messages, not less.