After putting one of President Trump’s tweets behind a warning that he glorifies violence, Twitter is acting again to do the same thing with a Congressman’s tweet, for the same reason. Both tweets refer to protests against the murder of George Floyd by a police officer who has since been released and has been charged with manslaughter.
MP Matt Gaetz (R-FL) tweeted yesterday:
Can we hunt Antifa like we do in the Middle East now that we clearly see him as a terrorist?
Twitter placed the tweet behind the same warning as the one used for a previous Trump tweet that implicitly threatened to have looters shot.
This tweet violated the Twitter rules to glorify violence. However, Twitter has determined that it may be in the public interest that the tweet remains available.
Twitter’s policy is to remove illegal tweets unless it is in the public interest to know what a politician with a large following has said. In these cases, illegal tweets are displayed with an additional warning.
The edge notes that not everyone agrees with this policy, some fear that it may not only glorify violence but also provoke it.
Senator Chris Murphy (D-CT) asked Twitter to remove the tweet. ‘Take the Gaetz tweet down now @twitter. RIGHT NOW. The survivors of mass shootings set my cell phone on fire. You are scared to death, this will inspire someone to shoot into a crowd tonight. You’re right, ”he said.
There have been widespread peaceful protests in the United States, but some focus their attention only on the much smaller looting that takes place under the guise of the protests.
Another risk of violence was compounded by a fake Twitter account claiming to represent demonstrators using the anti-fascist acronym Antifa. The account tweeted an obvious call to attack white neighborhoods. Indeed as NBC The account was reportedly created by the white supremacist group Identity Evropa.
A Twitter account claiming to be part of a national ‘Antifa’ organization and spreading violent rhetoric related to ongoing protests has been linked to white nationalist group Identity Evropa, a Twitter spokesman said.
The spokesman said the account violated the company’s platform manipulation and spam policies, particularly the creation of fake accounts. Twitter blocked the account after a tweet that led to violence.
Unlike Twitter, Facebook has taken no action to respond to Trump posting the same news on its platform. According to CEO Mark Zuckerberg, the social network only removes or hides posts if it believes that they pose an “immediate risk of certain damage or danger”.
Many of the company’s employees believe that this is the case the wrong call, staging what CNET describes as a ‘rare protest’ in the form of a virtual strike. Some took the day off to take part in protests, while others did not automatically respond to emails saying they disagreed with the company’s stance.
Other senior Facebook employees publicly criticized their employer on Twitter, including Facebook Messenger product designer Trevor Phillippi:
@FacebookThe decision not to respond to posts that lead to violence against blacks does not protect our community. I urge you to reconsider this decision and bring more transparency to the process, including black leadership.
– Trevor Phillippi (@trevorphillippi) June 1, 2020
And portal design manager Andrew Crow:
Censoring information that could help people see the full picture is wrong. However, it is unacceptable to create a platform to encourage violence and spread disinformation, regardless of who you are or whether it is current. I disagree with Mark’s position and will work on making changes.
– Andrew (@AndrewCrow) June 1, 2020
Apple responded to the murder with a memo to CEO Tim Cook’s employees outlining donations to groups against racial injustices and Apple Music’s participation in Black Out’s awareness campaign on Tuesday.