After having their building surrounded by protestors projecting messages imploring Twitter to delete President Trump’s account after he sent his tweets threatening nuclear war with North Korea, the company has declared that Trump did not actually violate their terms of service when he sent the messages over the social media service’s platform.
Despite the protestors, and the thousands of people who used Twitter’s own internal system for reporting abusive tweets to warn the service about the President’s failure to adhere to the clause in Twitter’s terms of service that explicitly states that:
“You may not make specific threats of violence or wish for the serious physical harm, death, or disease of an individual or group of people,”
the company exonerated Trump for violating the terms with this tweet:
North Korean Leader Kim Jong Un just stated that the “Nuclear Button is on his desk at all times.” Will someone from his depleted and food starved regime please inform him that I too have a Nuclear Button, but it is a much bigger & more powerful one than his, and my Button works!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 3, 2018
Twitter has cited exceptions to its policies on its page of rules that exempts the government from being subject to its control. It also adds some wiggle room to allow a wide range of interpretation as to what constitutes a violation of its policies.
“Please note that wishing or hoping that someone experiences serious physical harm, making vague threats, or threatening less serious forms of physical harm would not fall under this specific policy,” the page reads.
No word as to whether Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey considers nuclear warfare to fit under the “wishing or hoping” exception, the “vague threat” designation, or the “less serious forms of physical harm” anomaly, but somehow a 50 megaton explosion doesn’t seem to fit that latter category very well.
The only heartening news about this latest setback from Twitter is the fact that if his finger is on the keyboard of his phone sending tweets, then it can’t simultaneously be on that big old “Nuclear Button.” One must take one’s solace where one can these days.