Status: 11/24/2022 11:54 p.m
Twitter owner Musk is apparently planning a general “amnesty” for blocked Twitter accounts. He announced on Twitter that he would like to unblock certain blocked profiles next week. Experts fear an increase in hate speech.
The new Twitter owner Elon Musk has announced that he intends to unblock accounts of the short message service again in the coming week. According to Musk, accounts of users who have violated the law or are responsible for “outrageous spam” are excluded.
Musk: “The people have spoken”
Previously, the new company owner had users vote on whether there should be a “general amnesty” for blocked accounts if they did not violate the law or spread spam messages. A majority of the 3.1 million participating users spoke out in favor of reactivation of the profiles. In the Twitter poll, 72.4 percent voted in favor of unblocking and 27.6 percent voted against. According to the latest information, Twitter has more than 230 million daily active users.
Musk later tweeted, “The people have spoken. Amnesty begins next week.” Online safety experts expected an increase in harassment, hate speech and misinformation on the network as a result.
Twitter polls not representative
The results of surveys like the one Musk started are not representative – they can easily be influenced with the help of so-called bots. It is therefore unclear whether and how many votes were cast by such automated accounts.
In addition, Musk announced at the end of October that he would form a council on how to deal with controversial content before Twitter accounts were reactivated. Last week, however, the tech billionaire had the account of former US President Donald Trump activated without a committee – also after a user survey.
Trump was banned from Twitter in January 2021. On January 6, he expressed sympathy for his supporters who had stormed the seat of the US Parliament.
Musk bought Twitter for around $44 billion at the end of October and has since fired numerous employees. Since the takeover, the company has been struggling, among other things, with the reluctance of large advertising customers. Advertising revenue recently accounted for around 90 percent of revenue.