President Donald Trump said Thursday that he would have his administration begin an investigation on Twitter after there have been numerous complaints of discrimination against Republican figures.
“Twitter ‘SHADOW BANNING’ prominent Republicans. Not good. We will look into this discriminatory and illegal practice at once! Many complaints,” he wrote.
Twitter “SHADOW BANNING” prominent Republicans. Not good. We will look into this discriminatory and illegal practice at once! Many complaints.
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 26, 2018
There has been coverage for more than a year of Twitter hiding conservatives’ tweets and accounts by Breitbart, which reports that left-leaning outlets have also looked into the issue.
Trump’s tweet was in response to Republican politicians who have complained about Twitter, including GOP Reps. Matt Gaetz of Florida, Mark Meadows of North Carolina and Jim Jordan of Ohio, according to New York Post.
On Wednesday, House Majority Leader Kevin McCarty also tweeted about the Twitter bias.
“Social media is being rigged to censor conservatives. It’s time to rise up and demand accountability from Big Tech,” he wrote. “WE WILL NOT BE SILENCED.”
— Kevin McCarthy (@GOPLeader) July 26, 2018
Gaetz’s spokesman told The Hill that they had detected a “significant decrease” in their number of followers gained and retweets around May 15, about the time period the company implemented a new policy to tamp down “troll-like behaviors that distort and detract from the public conversation.”
The spokesman did not explain how the behavior was being evaluated.
Twitter’s product chief, Kayvon Beykpour, also clarified that Republicans were not being targeted in the algorithm change, as the Post reported.
Beykpour said Twitter was using methods to reduce “people’s ability to detract from healthy public conversation,” but “our behavioral ranking doesn’t make judgments based on political views or the substance of tweets. ”
The social media platform has warned that some users, especially politicians and celebrities, would see fewer users during this change.
The Post pointed out that former President Barack Obama lost over 2 million Twitter followers, Trump lost about 400,00 and pop start Katy Perry lost around 3 million.
As of now, there are no details as to what the Trump administration is planning to do in its investigation.
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