Twitter has temporarily locked U.S. President Donald Trump’s account after supporters stormed the Capitol building on Thursday.
The mob gained access to the congressional chambers and voting floors, resulting in an evacuation. One woman was shot during the incident and several police officers had reportedly been injured.
Trump addressed the rioters in a subsequent video. In it he reiterated his previous claims that the 2020 presidential election was stolen from them. He also claimed he won the election by a ‘landslide’.
This resulted in social media platforms such as Facebook and YouTube removing the video due to its inclusion of misinformation regarding election fraud.
Twitter originally took a softer stance by restricting the video posted on Donald Trump’s account. This meant that it remained live but couldn’t be retweeted, liked or commented on.
A disclaimer had also been added to the bottom of the tweet.
“This claim of election fraud is disputed, and this Tweet can’t be replied to, Retweeted, or liked due to risk of violence.”
Since then Twitter has removed several of Trump’s tweets, including the video, and locked his account for twelve hours.
Twitter Safety made this announcement in a string on tweets on Thursday morning.
“As a result of the unprecedented and ongoing violent situation in Washington, D.C., we have required the removal of three @realDonaldTrump Tweets that were posted earlier today for repeated and severe violations of our Civic Integrity policy,” Twitter safety said.
Twitter also said it would ban Trump’s account if it continued to violate its content rules.
“Future violations of the Twitter Rules, including our Civic Integrity or Violent Threats policies, will result in permanent suspension of the @realDonaldTrump account.”
This isn’t the first time Trump has pushed the boundaries of Twitter’s content rules. He has been able to skirt these due to having special privileges as a world leader. This affords even some inflammatory tweets as being in “a clear public interest value to keeping the tweet on the service.”
However, Trump has still had some tweets flagged in the past. Back in May Twitter restricted a tweet from Trump that it said glorified violence. The tweet read, “When the looting starts, the shooting starts.”
Several of Trump’s tweets during the 2020 election were also tagged as being disputed due the inclusion of election fraud claims.
Trump will lose his special Twitter status on January 21, unless he gets permabanned first.
Facebook has also blocked Trump’s Page, citing two policy violations. The ban will be in place for 24-hours.
“We’ve assessed two policy violations against President Trump’s Page which will result in a 24-hour feature block, meaning he will lose the ability to post on the platform during that time,” a Facebook spokesperson has said on Twitter.
We've assessed two policy violations against President Trump's Page which will result in a 24-hour feature block, meaning he will lose the ability to post on the platform during that time.
— Facebook Newsroom (@fbnewsroom) January 7, 2021
This moves comes after the social media giant removed Trump’s video in support of the mob which claimed the 2020 election “was stolen from us”.