As widely expected, Elon Musk has confirmed that he would reverse former President Donald Trump’s Twitter ban if his acquisition of the company goes through.
Musk had widely hinted at such a decision, saying that Twitter should be “reluctant to delete things” and “very cautious with permanent bans.” But at the Financial Times’ Future of the Car conference, Musk said that “I would reverse the perma-ban …But my opinion, and Jack Dorsey, I want to be clear, shares this opinion, is that we should not have perma-bans.”
Dorsey, who is Twitter’s co-founder and former CEO, confirmed his agreement via (where else?) Twitter. “There are exceptions,” he said. “But generally permanent bans are a failure of ours and don’t work.”
For better or worse, Trump’s Twitter account was a defining feature of his presidency. America had a direct, unfiltered connection to its Commander-in-Chief’s off the cuff thoughts, and a single post — a single typo — could capture hours or even days of ceaseless media attention. The flow stopped in the wake of the January 6 riots, when Twitter banned Trump “indefinitely” for violating its terms of service by inciting violence.
Since then, Trump has said that he has no interest in returning to Twitter and has instead propped up his own social media site, Truth Social. But Truth Social has led a truly cursed existence so far, and if Trump did decide to take Musk up on his decision, it wouldn’t be the first time the famously mercurial businessman changed his mind. In any case, if Musk’s acquisition goes through, it sounds like the door will be open.
“Banning Trump from Twitter didn’t end Trump’s voice. It will amplify it among the right and this is why it’s morally wrong and flat out stupid,” Musk said at the Financial Times’ event.