Elon Musk launches Twitter poll for public to decide if suspended accounts return or not

The owner of Twitter, Elon Musklaunched a survey among users of the social network on Wednesday about the restoration of suspended accounts, after a survey days ago led him to reinstate Donald Trump on the platform.

Should Twitter offer a blanket amnesty to suspended accounts, as long as they haven’t broken the law or egregiously spammed? OtherwiseMusk asked.

The poll, which will run until 5:46 p.m. GMT on Thursday, was similar to the strategy used in the Trump case.

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Trump’s Twitter account, blocked early last year, was reinstated on Saturday after a narrow majority of those polled supported the move, days after the former US president announced a new run for the White House.

A general reinstatement of the suspended accounts on Twitter could alarm government authorities, who are keeping a close eye on how Musk handles hate speech.

It could also scare off Apple and Google, which have the power to ban Twitter from their mobile app stores and deny access to the platform to hundreds of millions of its users.

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Trump had been banned from Twitter for his role in the January 6, 2021 attack on the United States Capitol by a mob of his supporters seeking to overturn Joe Biden’s victory in the 2020 election.

In addition to the former president’s account, Twitter reinstated other suspended accounts, including that of a conservative parody site and that of a psychologist who had violated Twitter’s rules on language identifying transgender people.

However, Musk has said that conspiracy theorist Alex Jones will remain banned from the platform.

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Musk, who completed the $44 billion purchase of Twitter at the end of October, did not clarify whether the bans in the survey were permanent or temporary suspensions.

The new owner of Twitter believes that content moderation is too restrictive and undermines freedom of expression. This vision generates fears of a wave of abuses (misinformation, hate speech) on the social network.

Many brands have already suspended ad spend, which Twitter is 90% dependent on for revenue.

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