HYPOCRITE: Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey Says Twitter Set A ‘Dangerous Precedent’ By Banning Trump, Admits Big Tech Firms Have Too Much Power

Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey acknowledged that his company’s decision to ban President Donald Trump from the platform set a “dangerous precedent” with “real and significant ramifications” as he admitted the move was ultimately a “failure” by Twitter to “promote healthy conversation.”

His remarks on Wednesday came as Twitter stocks plunged and erased US$5 billion after banning the sitting US President from its platform following a breach in Capitol Hill last week that left five people dead, and more than 50 others injured.

Reports said together with another social media behemoth, Facebook, both platforms lost a combined US$51 billion of market value since booting President Trump from their platforms.

In a series of tweets, the Twitter chief stood by the company’s decision saying “it was the right decision” with the “best information” they had — while also noting that the incident prompts the company “to reflect on our operations and the environment around us.”

“I do not celebrate or feel pride in our having to ban @realDonaldTrump from Twitter, or how we got here. After a clear warning we’d take this action, we made a decision with the best information we had based on threats to physical safety both on and off Twitter,” Dorsey wrote.

“Was this correct? I believe this was the right decision for Twitter. We faced an extraordinary and untenable circumstance, forcing us to focus all of our actions on public safety. Offline harm as a result of online speech is demonstrably real, and what drives our policy and enforcement above all.”

“Dangerous precedent”

“That said, having to ban an account has real and significant ramifications. While there are clear and obvious exceptions, I feel a ban is a failure of ours ultimately to promote healthy conversation. And a time for us to reflect on our operations and the environment around us,” he added.

Dorsey went on to say that the decision blocked free public discussions as he acknowledged the fact that it showed the “power” of an “individual or a corporation” over public conversation.

“Having to take these actions fragment the public conversation. They divide us. They limit the potential for clarification, redemption, and learning. And sets a precedent I feel is dangerous: the power an individual or corporation has over a part of the global public conversation,” the Twitter chief added.

Dorsey went on to deny claims that big tech coordinated to censor  President Trump from its platform saying other companies “either made their own choices or were emboldened by the actions of others.”

“I do not believe this was coordinated. More likely: companies came to their own conclusions or were emboldened by the actions of others,” he said.

“Destructive to ideals of open internet”

“This moment in time might call for this dynamic, but over the long term it will be destructive to the noble purpose and ideals of the open internet. A company making a business decision to moderate itself is different from a government removing access, yet can feel much the same,” he said.

“Yes, we all need to look critically at inconsistencies of our policy and enforcement. Yes, we need to look at how our service might incentivize distraction and harm. Yes, we need more transparency in our moderation operations. All this can’t erode a free and open global internet.”

In an attempt to address criticisms of double-standards, Dorsey said Twitter is doing its part by “funding an initiative around an open decentralized standard for social media” — and will be putting-up “standard[s] from scratch” after heavy backlash from conservative voices that felt they were being silenced on social media platforms.

Dorsey claimed Twitter’s goal is to “disarm as much as we can” and “ensure” it is helping build a “more peaceful existence” while also acknowledging its failure to promote global public conversation.

“I believe the internet and global public conversation is our best and most relevant method of achieving this. I also recognize it does not feel that way today. Everything we learn in this moment will better our effort, and push us to be what we are: one humanity working together,” Dorsey said.

While his remarks were seen as an attempt to simmer down criticisms,  he was slammed right back by conservatives accusing the platform of hypocrisy and not equally enforcing its policies.

“Whether or not such policies are consistently enforced is just as important as whether or not this call was the correct one,” one user wrote.

“Twitter CEO tries to explain decision to ban Trump. Says he had to do it, but concedes move ‘sets a precedent I feel is dangerous,’” another one said.

“It also seems that it wasn’t based on Trump’s actual words but rather what Jack assumed Trump *really* meant in subtext.  The “dog whistle” argument which allows them to interpret anything how they want regardless of what is actually said,” another user wrote responding to the reason of “inciting violence” as the cause for the ban.

“A lot more people would be supportive of banning Trump from Twitter if the rule was even remotely close to being enforced consistently. No excuse for allowing literal terrorists, but banning Trump,” another said.

“This thread is a lie but also, we are not asking you to get rid of your own community standards. We simply wish them to be applied equally. You and the rest of us know they are not. #Equality,” one user wrote.

Twitter along with social media firms Facebook, Instagram and YouTube moved to ban President Trump saying keeping him on their platforms posed too large a risk of additional violence. Other big tech firms Google, Amazon and Apple also kicked out social networking service, Parler, widely seen as conservatives’ alternative to Twitter citing “moderation policies.”

Steeve Strange

Steeve is the CEO & Co-Founder of The Scoop.