[guest post by Dana]
On Tuesday, Twitter’s incoming owner, Elon Musk, announced he would “reverse the permanent ban” on Trump. At a conference hosted by the Financial Times in London, he called the decision “a mistake because it alienated a large part of the country and did not ultimately result in Donald Trump not having a voice.” In general, Musk, a self-described “free-speech absolutist,” stated he was against the concept of permanent bans in general because they “just fundamentally undermine trust in Twitter.” He laid out the concept for a censorship protocol that would be extremely difficult to enforce on problem users who, for example, threaten a nuclear exchange online: “If there are tweets that are wrong and bad, those should be either deleted or made invisible, and a suspension — a temporary suspension — is appropriate, but not a permanent ban.”
The lifting of the ban on Trump could happen just in time for the runup to the 2024 presidential election. And while Trump has already said that he wouldn’t return to Twitter if allowed, we all know that a massive platform with a gigantic built-in audience in which to promote himself would be nearly impossible for Trump to resist. Bigly.