Moments ago, Twitter permanently banned Alex Jones and Infowars from its platform. Earlier this summer, Jones and Infowars were removed by other major tech companies like Apple, Facebook and YouTube. According to Twitter, the ban comes after Alex Jones and Infowars repeatedly violated the company’s abusive behavior policies. Shortly after being banned today, Jones appeared on an Infowars show on Twitter’s Periscope.
In reaction to the announcement, Media Matters President Angelo Carusone issued the following statement:
Media Matters has monitored Alex Jones longer than anyone and has dozens of documented incidents of him violating the rules on with impunity, so the most important thing to be said about his removal from Twitter is: Good. It’s about time.
But, Alex Jones has pushed dangerous conspiracy theories with real life consequences for years and in recent weeks Twitter took measly half measures to limit his actions platform. Twitter was the last major tech platform to see what is obvious -- Jones used Twitter in clear violation of the rules to perpetuate hate speech and harassment.
Alex Jones’ harrassment of CNN’s Oliver Darcy was par for the course for Jones’ behavior -- Twitter is using it to save face and ban him now. It wasn’t until Jones came face-to-face with Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey that Jones was permanently banned from the platform, raising serious questions about when and how Twitter is willing to enforce its terms of service.
There are already troubling signs that Twitter does not understand the full scope of Infowars’ accounts on it’s platforms.