Twitter completely banned former nationwide safety adviser Michael Flynn and Donald Trump’s lawyer ally Sidney Powell in a purge Friday of high-profile customers peddling baseless, harmful QAnon conspiracy theories.
Twitter cracked down on the identical day as its historic everlasting ban on Trump’s private account “due to the risk of further incitement of violence” from the president’s tweets.
Accounts touting QAnon conspiracies have been “suspended in line with our policy on Coordinated Harmful Activity,” a Twitter spokesperson advised NBC News.
“We’ve been clear that we will take strong enforcement action on behavior that has the potential to lead to offline harm, and given the renewed potential for violence surrounding this type of behavior in the coming days, we will permanently suspend accounts that are solely dedicated to sharing QAnon content.”
Flynn, who was pardoned by Trump in November after pleading responsible to federal felonies, posted a video final yr displaying him taking a QAnon oath. Wild conspiracies peddled by the nameless “Q” embrace perception that an elite cabal of celebrities and Democrats traffics kids for intercourse and even sacrifices them in satanic rituals.
The Twitter account of far-right radio host Rush Limbaugh was additionally shut down Friday, nevertheless it wasn’t instantly clear why.
The dramatic QAnon housecleaning comes amid mounting criticism that varied web platforms had been complicit within the deadly storming of the U.S. Capitol on Wednesday by Trump supporters, together with many who observe QAnon. The assault left 5 individuals useless, together with Capitol Police Officer Brian Sicknick. Critics say the social media platforms have allowed the rampant unfold of harmful lies and have offered customers a way to conspire to commit violence.
In one other crackdown Friday, YouTube shuttered the “War Room” podcast and an related channel of onetime White House strategist Steve Bannon for “repeatedly violating our Community Guidelines,” a YouTube spokesperson mentioned in an announcement. The tips bar movies from presenting lies in regards to the 2020 election. The plug was pulled shortly after Trump’s private lawyer Rudy Giuliani once more lied in regards to the presidential election, baselessly claiming it had been rigged.
Reddit additionally on Friday terminated the “r/Donaldtrump” subreddit and banned the chief moderator for the “r/conspiracy” subreddit.
“Reddit’s site-wide policies prohibit content that promotes hate, or encourages, glorifies, incites, or calls for violence against groups of people or individuals,” a Reddit spokesperson advised CNET in an emailed assertion. “We have also taken action to ban the community r/Donaldtrump given repeated policy violations in recent days regarding the violence at the U.S. Capitol.”
Google additionally on Friday suspended right-wing social media platform Parler from the Google Play retailer. A Google assertion mentioned that firm insurance policies require that apps which show user-generated content material have “moderation policies and enforcement that removes egregious content like posts that incite violence.”
After Trump’s Twitter account was banned Friday, he tried to submit messages on different accounts, which Twitter rapidly swatted down. Tweets he posted to the official POTUS web site had been yanked. When he posted tweets on his marketing campaign’s account, it was shut down.
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