Twitter permanently suspended President Donald Trump’s account on Friday, citing “the risk of further incitement of violence.” As reported by NBC News, the president’s account, with 88 million followers, was initially banned for 12 hours on Wednesday due to “severe violations of our Civic Integrity policy,” after he used the platform to condemn Vice President Mike Pence as his supporters stormed the Capitol.
“After close review of recent Tweets from the @realDonaldTrump account and the context around them we have permanently suspended the account due to the risk of further incitement of violence,” the company said in a tweet. Almost immediately, the account that Trump had used for years to convey his every thought, to denounce his enemies and praise his friends, to convey uncountable false statements and official White House announcements, simply disappeared. It was suddenly impossible to see his previous tweets, or even to see his reaction to Twitter’s decision. Instead, his empty account had been marked: “Account suspended.” Trump’s attempts to tweet from associated accounts also were blocked. At one point, he was tweeting from his campaign account, but that was promptly suspended.
In a blog post, Twitter detailed the reasoning behind the decision. “In the context of horrific events this week, we made it clear on Wednesday that additional violations of the Twitter Rules would potentially result in this very course of action,” Twitter wrote. “Our public interest framework exists to enable the public to hear from elected officials and world leaders directly. It is built on a principle that the people have a right to hold power to account in the open.” “However, we made it clear going back years that these accounts are not above our rules and cannot use Twitter to incite violence,” the post continued. “We will continue to be transparent around our policies and their enforcement.”