Twitter has a problem with white supremacist and neo-Nazi content proliferating on the platform—and Elon Musk is making that problem worse.
In recent days, the platform’s new CEO has reactivated the accounts of known neo-Nazis; shared a picture of a white supremacist who said he’d like Trump to be more like Hitler; failed to prevent users from posting videos of the Christchurch massacre; tweeted a popular alt-right meme; used a known antisemitic trope; and, inadvertently or not, shared a dogwhistle that white supremacists interpreted as praise for Hitler.
Musk’s apparent embrace of the white supremacist community has already led to a rise in hate speech on the platform, and it’s about to get even darker. In far-right forums, extremists of all stripes are salivating at the prospect of being able to share their hateful ideologies on a platform with much greater reach when Musk reinstates accounts that were banned for spreading hate speech.
“As soon as he took over Twitter, we saw extremists trying to exploit the platform, we’ve seen hate of all kinds increase, so these messages that he’s sending have to be understood in the context of what is happening to that platform,” Oren Segal, vice president of the Anti-Defamation League’s Center on Extremism, told VICE News. “As it’s becoming a hellscape for antisemitism and racism and bigotry, it just so happens that he is putting out the type of language that is appreciated by those who are doing that.” [Continue reading…]