After carefully examining the latest tweets from the @ realDonaldTrump account and the context around them – especially how they are received and interpreted on and outside of Twitter – we have permanently blocked the account due to the risk of further inciting violence.
In connection with terrible events this week, we made it clear on Wednesday that additional violations of the Twitter rules could potentially lead to this very course of action. Our Public Interest Framework enables the public to hear directly from elected officials and world leaders. It is based on the principle that the people have the right to openly hold power to account.
However, we made it clear years ago that these accounts are not completely above our rules and, among other things, cannot use Twitter to incite violence. We will continue to be transparent about our policies and how they are enforced.
Below is a comprehensive analysis of our approach to policy enforcement in this case.
On January 8, 2021, President Donald J. Trump tweeted:
“The 75,000,000 great American patriots who voted for me, AMERICA FIRST, and MAKE AMERICA BIG AGAIN, will continue to have a HUGE VOTE. You will not be disregarded or treated unfairly in any way, in any form or in any form! “
Shortly thereafter, the president tweeted:
“Everyone who asked, I will not go to the inauguration on January 20th.”
With ongoing tensions in the United States and an increase in global conversation regarding the people who forcibly stormed the Capitol on January 6, 2021, these two tweets must be read in the context of more general events in the country and in the ways that how the President’s statements can be mobilized by various audiences, including incitement to violence, as well as in the context of the pattern of behavior found in this report in recent weeks After evaluating the language in these tweets against our Glorification of Violence Policy, we determined that these Tweets violated the Glorification of Violence Policy and the user @realDonaldTrump should be immediately and permanently suspended from service.
We evaluated the above two tweets as part of our Glorification of Violence Policy, which aims to prevent the glorification of violence that might inspire others to repeat acts of violence, and found that they are most likely to encourage and inspire people to repeat the offenses that took place on January 6, 2021 in the US Capitol.
This determination is based on a number of factors including:
- President Trump’s statement that he will not attend the inauguration will be received by a number of his supporters as further confirmation that the election was illegitimate and is viewed as a rejection of his earlier claim, which his deputy made two tweets ( 1, 2) Chief of Staff Dan Scavino said there would be an “orderly transition” on January 20th.
- The second tweet can also serve as an encouragement to those who may be considering acts of violence that the inauguration would be a “safe” target as it will not be in attendance.
- The use of the words “American Patriots” to describe some of his followers is also interpreted as support for those who commit acts of violence in the US Capitol.
- Mentioning his supporters who have a “HUGE VOICE long in the future” and “You will not be disregarded or treated unfairly in any way, form, or form !!!” is interpreted as a further indication that President Trump does not intend to facilitate an “orderly transition”, but rather that he wants to continue to support, empower and protect those who believe they have won the election.
- Plans for future armed protests have already begun to spread on and off Twitter, including a planned secondary assault on the U.S. Capitol and State Capitol buildings on January 17, 2021.
Hence, we firmly believe that the two above tweets will inspire others to repeat the acts of violence that took place on January 6, 2021, and that there are several indicators that they will be received and taken as encouragement to do so.