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‘Tweets for death’ a huge no-no, says Twitter, backlash pours in near-instant

Sun 04 Oct 2020    
| 2 min read

Twitter has issued a statement saying that tweets publicly wishing for President Donald Trump’s death following his positive coronavirus diagnosis violate their abusive behaviour policy and could result in suspension.

The statement, published on Friday, has sparked a backlash within the Twitter community, with many people describing it as hypocritical.

The POTUS’s announcement prompted some people to hope for his speedy recovery, while others tweeted harmful thoughts, wishing the ‘disease would kill him.’

Twitter responded to the abuse by saying: “Tweets that wish or hope for death, serious bodily harm, or fatal disease against anyone are not allowed and will need to be removed.”

The statement has angered many Twitter users, including some lawmakers who argued that many people, especially those in the marginalised communities, received death threats on the social platform all the time, with little response from the company.

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, who mentioned last year that she was flooded with online death threats, tweeted in response.

“So… you mean to tell us you could’ve done this the whole time?”

Rep. Rashida Tlaib followed in vein, tweeting, “Seriously though, this is messed up. The death threats towards us should have been taking more seriously by @TwitterComs.”

Other people have also criticised the company for its late addressal of the issue, raising questions on whether the Twitter Comms were remotely aware of the hate ‘a woman, a POC, the disabled, the liberal, the progressive or the non-religious’ users received. 

Twitter has stated that it is suspending some users but will not act on every tweet. The abusive behaviour policy has existed since April.

“We’re prioritising the removal of content when it has a clear call to action that could potentially cause real-world harm,” a spokesperson has said.

On Friday, Trump announced that he and First Lady Melania Trump were admitted to Walter Reed Hospital for “further monitoring” and treatment.

Trump’s tweet confirming the news became his most liked and retweeted ever.

[Sourced from Agencies]