Mr. O’Keefe, a conservative activist, was banned for violating Twitter’s rules on platform manipulation and spam, according to a Twitter spokesperson. Mr. O’Keefe disputed Twitter’s claim.
A Twitter spokesperson noted that the company’s policies prevent users from “mislead[ing] others on Twitter by operating fake accounts” and stop users from artificially amplifying or disrupting conversations through the use of multiple accounts.
Prior to his suspension, Mr. O’Keefe was posting content that purported to show a CNN staffer talking about his network’s efforts to defeat former President Donald Trump. The undercover video was the latest result of the conservative activists’ sting operation that Mr. O’Keefe and his supporters shared on Twitter with #ExposeCNN.
Mr. O’Keefe said Thursday he planned to sue Twitter for defamation in response to its actions.
“I am suing Twitter for defamation because they said I, James O’Keefe, ‘operated fake accounts.’ This is false, this is defamatory, and they will pay,” said Mr. O’Keefe in a statement. “Section 230 may have protected them before, but it will not protect them from me. The complaint will be filed on Monday.”
Twitter did not answer whether it deleted any other accounts, but it said its suspension means Mr. O’Keefe will not be able to start any new accounts on its platform.
Twitter’s ban did not stop Mr. O’Keefe’s communications online, however, and he is encouraging people to follow him on Telegram, a cloud-based messaging service.
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