Deplatforming Trump

 Jan 7, 2021 ·  Feb 11, 2021 ·  2min read

Leadership Personal

Short update: Today, I exercised my power as a user and left Twitter. Here’s why. [Edited Feb 11, 2021]

In case you wonder what happened to my Twitter account: I deleted it in the larger context of the riots in the US Capitol.

US Capitol Stormed - BBC News 

All the latest news about US Capitol stormed from the BBC

The day after the insurgence, I read the follwing two offical Twitter statements:

As a result of the unprecedented and ongoing violent situation in Washington, D.C., we have required the removal of three @realDonaldTrump Tweets that were posted earlier today for repeated and severe violations of our Civic Integrity policy.

This means that the account of @realDonaldTrump will be locked for 12 hours following the removal of these Tweets. If the Tweets are not removed, the account will remain locked.

In other words: Twitter didn’t permanently ban Trump from its platform that he used to fuel the riots (and many other things I don’t agree with at all). As a private company, they’d be entitled to do exactly that. Yet they decided not to.

In my opinion, it means that Twitter is passively supporting Trump and what Trump stands for. This is in violation of my core values.

Where there’s no audience, there’s no stage.

So while Twitter doesn’t ban Trump, I ban Twitter. A platform is only worth something with an audience, so I removed myself from that audience.

More and more, I realize that I want to grant whatever little I have (time, money, attention, …) only to people that have their and my longterm benefit in mind. Social media providers less and less appear to be of that kind of people.

I invite you to do the same.

Update Feb 11, 2021

Even though Twitter ended up permanently suspending Trump’s account shortly after I wrote this article, I decided not to restore my own Twitter account.

First: While late is better than never, it wasn’t good enough for me this time. Second: I enjoyed the past month with less Social Media. So I’ll stick to it.

About the Author

Michael Schmidle

Business Transformation Manager at the Swiss Broadcast Corporation SRG SSR. Start-up consultant, hobby music producer and blogger. Opinionated about technology, innovation, and leadership. In love with Mexico. This blog reflects my personal views.

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