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Inside Twitter’s Decision to Cut Off Trump

SAN FRANCISCO — Jack Dorsey, Twitter’s chief executive, was working remotely on a private island in French Polynesia frequented by celebrities escaping the paparazzi when a phone call interrupted him on Jan. 6.On the line was Vijaya Gadde, Twitter’s top lawyer and safety expert, with an update from the real world. She said she and other company executives had decided to lock President Trump’s account, temporarily, to prevent him from posting statements that might provoke more violence after a mob stormed the U.S. Capitol that day.Mr. Dorsey was concerned about the move, said two people with …

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YouTube Suspends Trump’s Channel for at Least Seven Days

OAKLAND, Calif. — YouTube said on Tuesday that it had suspended President Trump’s channel over concern about “ongoing potential for violence,” the latest move by one of the large technology companies to limit the president online.In a post on YouTube’s official Twitter account, the Google-owned video site said it had suspended Mr. Trump’s account after one of his recent videos violated its policy for inciting violence.That meant Mr. Trump would not be able to upload new content to his channel, which had about 2.8 million subscribers, for at least seven days. YouTube also said it was disabling …

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Twitter Removes Over 70,000 QAnon Accounts

SAN FRANCISCO — Twitter on Monday said that it had removed more than 70,000 accounts that promoted the QAnon conspiracy theory in recent days, as the company widened its crackdown on content that could incite violence after barring President Trump from its service last week.Twitter, which carried out the suspensions over the weekend, said it acted to clamp down on posts that have “the potential to lead to offline harm.” It added that many of the users who were removed had operated multiple QAnon accounts, driving up the total number of accounts that were taken down.“These accounts were engaged in …

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How Parler, a Chosen App of Trump Fans, Became a Test of Free Speech

Parler grew slowly until early 2020, when Twitter began labeling Mr. Trump’s tweets as inaccurate and some of his supporters joined Parler in protest. After November’s election, Parler grew even more quickly as Facebook and Twitter clamped down on false claims that the vote had been rigged. So many users signed up that, at times, they overloaded the company’s systems and forced it to pause new registrations.In total, people downloaded Parler’s app more than 10 million times last year, with 80 percent in the United States, according to Sensor Tower, the app data firm.Last Wednesday, Mr. Trump …

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Amazon, Apple and Google Cut Off Parler, an App That Drew Trump Supporters

Other platforms that host posts by right-wing influencers, including CloutHub and MyMilitia — a forum for militia groups — adjusted their terms of service recently to ban threats of violence.DLive was pressured by Tipalti, a payment company that helps it operate. Tilpati said in a statement that it had suspended its service until DLive removed the accounts that had broadcast the riots on Wednesday.Such third-party companies that help apps and websites function, from payment processors to cybersecurity firms to web-hosting providers like Amazon, have used their positions to influence how their customers handle extremist or criminal activity. In 2019, Cloudflare, a …

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What Is Dlive? The Streaming Site Growing in Far-Right Users

But when a user changes the settings to allow “x-tagged” content to be viewed, streams with thousands of viewers discussing the riot at the Capitol quickly dominate the home page. In his stream on Thursday night, Mr. Fuentes, who had attracted 20,000 viewers, called Wednesday’s events “a flicker of hope” that “showed what is possible.”Neither Mr. Gionet nor Mr. Fuentes responded to requests for comment.“Everything about this platform is fake,” said Mr. Jovanovic, 34, the longtime streamer. “It’s like a cardboard building that shows Disneyland. As soon as you press on it, it’s death and carnage.”Mr. …

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How Trump is Losing his Social Media Platforms

Mr. Trump would still find ways to reach his followers without Facebook and Twitter, of course. There would still be Fox News, Newsmax, OANN and legions of pro-Trump partisans willing to repost his messages. Newspapers and cable news stations, which have long treated anything a president said as inherently newsworthy, might not be able to resist giving Mr. Trump airtime and attention even when he is a private citizen. And he has expressed interest in starting his own digital media empire, where he could set his own rules.The Presidential TransitionUpdated Jan. 8, 2021, 12:48 a.m. ETThe most obvious short-term move for …

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Twitter and Facebook Lock Trump’s Accounts After Violence on Capitol Hill

SAN FRANCISCO — Twitter and Facebook on Wednesday locked the accounts of President Trump, which prevents him from posting messages to his more than 88 million followers on Twitter and 35 million followers on Facebook, after he published a string of inaccurate and inflammatory messages on a day of violence in the nation’s capital.The moves were an unprecedented rebuke of Mr. Trump by the social media companies, which have long been megaphones for the president.Twitter said Mr. Trump’s account would remain locked for 12 hours and the ban could be extended if several of his tweets that rejected the election …

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The ‘Red Slime’ Lawsuit That Could Sink Right-Wing Media

In an era of brazen political lies, Mr. Mugica has emerged as an unlikely figure with the power to put the genie back in the bottle. Last week, his lawyer sent scathing letters to the Fox News Channel, Newsmax and OAN demanding that they immediately, forcefully clear his company’s name — and that they retain documents for a planned defamation lawsuit. He has, legal experts say, an unusually strong case. And his new lawyer is J. Erik Connolly, who not coincidentally won the largest settlement in the history of American media defamation in 2017, at least $177 million, for a beef producer …

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How China Censored Covid-19

This article is copublished with ProPublica, the nonprofit investigative newsroom.In the early hours of Feb. 7, China’s powerful internet censors experienced an unfamiliar and deeply unsettling sensation. They felt they were losing control.The news was spreading quickly that Li Wenliang, a doctor who had warned about a strange new viral outbreak only to be threatened by the police and accused of peddling rumors, had died of Covid-19. Grief and fury coursed through social media. To people at home and abroad, Dr. Li’s death showed the terrible cost of the Chinese government’s instinct to suppress inconvenient information. …

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