- The Washington Times
Monday, June 1, 2020

Twitter’s disparate treatment of its users’ content has rankled supporters of President Trump who say the company’s behavior smacks of hypocrisy.

Last week, Twitter took action against several of Mr. Trump’s tweets. First, the company flagged a pair of the president’s tweets about mail-in voting and linked to other posts on the topic. Next, Twitter tagged one of Mr. Trump’s tweets about the protests and looting nationwide as potentially inciting violence and disabled Twitter users’ ability to “like” or “reply” to the president’s tweet.

As protests devolved into riots nationwide throughout the weekend, Mr. Trump’s defenders noticed incendiary hyperbole from various segments of Twitter going unchecked while Mr. Trump faced strict scrutiny.

On Sunday night, a University of Alabama at Birmingham professor published tweets instructing protesters on how to pull down monuments, which prompted the phrase “Washington Monument” to trend in the U.S. on Monday morning. Sarah Parcak, the professor, tweeted that she is an expert on obelisks and displayed a diagram on how to destroy one in her tweets, which were widely viewed online.

“PSA for ANYONE who might be interested in how to pull down an obelisk* safely from an Egyptologist who never ever in a million years thought this advice might come in handy,” Ms. Parcak tweeted.

Mr. Trump’s defenders were incensed that Twitter did nothing to restrict Ms. Pacak’s tweet even as it made interacting with Mr. Trump’s content more difficult.

“So @twitter censors President Trump, but allows this goo brained terrorist to encourage a terrorist organization to destroy the Washington Monument,” tweeted @CarpeDonktum.

Mr. Trump has shared memes and content from @CarpeDonktum with the president’s more than 80 million Twitter followers, and Mr. Trump invited the user to the White House for a social media summit in 2019.

“Dear @Twitter, How about you make yourselves useful, cut the bulls– “fact-checking,” and start removing garbage like this?” tweeted Dan Bongino, a Fox News personality, about Ms. Parcak’s tweet. “WAKE UP. DO THE RIGHT THING!!”

More than 16 hours after Ms. Parcak’s tweeted instructions about how to wreck monuments went live, Twitter had not removed or ostensibly restricted her content. Twitter did not respond to requests for comment.

Mr. Trump signed an executive order last week aimed at altering social media companies’ behavior by withholding protection from legal liabilities afforded to them under Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act.

Copyright © 2020 The Washington Times, LLC.