President Donald Trump has been active across different social media platforms, but it was never a secret which was his favorite. Trump often credited his Twitter account for his popularity and even said that his political future would have been very different without the site. “Without the tweets, I wouldn’t be here,” Trump told the Financial Times in April 2017. So it came as little surprise that the commander in chief did not take it well when Twitter decided to permanently ban him from its service “due to the risk of further incitement of violence.” It seems there was pandemonium over at the White House when Twitter announced its decision Friday night. Trump went “ballistic,” a senior administration official told Politico, noting the president “was scrambling to figure out what his options are.”
Trump seemed to be engulfed by a burning desire to tweet and so he grabbed hold of the official @POTUS Twitter account and published a statement that the White House also issued separately. Trump lashed out at Twitter, saying it had “coordinated with the Democrats and the Radical Left” to remove his account. Trump also said he had been “negotiating with various other sites” and that he and his allies are looking “at the possibilities of building out our own platform in the near future.” Twitter quickly took down the messages from the @POTUS account. Donald Trump Jr. characterized the ban as “absolute insanity,” adding that it showed how “we are living Orwell’s 1984.”
Twitter warned that any account Trump used to try to get around the ban could face permanent suspension as well. It later shut down the @TeamTrump campaign account as well after it sent out a tweet with the president’s statement. “As we’ve said, using another account to try to evade a suspension is against our rules,” a Twitter spokesperson said. Twitter also suspended the account of Gary Coby, Trump’s digital director who renamed his account after the president. It also suspended @thedonalddotwin.
Twitter banned Trump a day after Facebook prevented Trump from posting on the platform for at least the rest of his term. Snapchat and Twitch have also disabled Trump’s account. The Twitter ban came after a big debate within the company on what to do with the president’s account. Hundreds of Twitter employees sent a letter to company chief Jack Dorsey calling for the company to permanently suspend Trump and investigate the company’s actions over the past few years. “Despite our efforts to serve the public conversation, as Trump’s megaphone, we helped fuel the deadly events of January 6th,” the employees wrote, according to the Washington Post. “We request an investigation into how our public policy decisions led to the amplification of serious anti-democratic threats. We must learn from our mistakes in order to avoid causing future harm.”