Twitter’s decision not to ban Alex Jones, a drama in 10 tweets

Hello, world.
Hello, world.
Image: AP Photo/Richard Drew
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Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey has a lot of mentions to sort through.

Late yesterday, Dorsey posted a tweetstorm explaining Twitter’s decision not to ban notorious conspiracy theorist Alex Jones, founder of Infowars, from the platform. Apple, Facebook, YouTube, and a number of other platforms took down Jones’s content earlier this week. It began:

The decision led critics to question Dorsey’s logic. Here’s Ellen Pao, a former tech investor, Reddit CEO, and current head of Project Include:

Then, Dorsey explained how Twitter has been “terrible” at explaining its rationale for hard decisions:

To which Emily Horne, Twitter’s former head of global policy communications, issued a sharply worded reply:

Dorsey went on to say Twitter should not “simply react to outside pressure” when making decisions about whether to ban someone from its platform.

At that point, current Twitter employees got in on the action. Marina Zhao, a senior software engineer on the Twitter Moments team, called out her CEO for muddled thinking:

Others pointed out Twitter’s seemingly arbitrary standards:

Dorsey then urged journalists to serve as auditors and fact-checkers of material posted on on the troll- and bot-filled platform:

Journalists responded in kind:

Dorsey closed the thread by linking to a company blog post about the platform’s rules:

The replies and retorts continued to roll in.