Moments after social media giant Twitter announced late Friday that Trump’s personal account would remain permanently suspended, thousands of netizens were shook and left rejoicing the development.
One user remarked that the development was “like the Berlin Wall coming down, but for stupidity,” whereas another netizen, journalist David Begnaud, highlighted how Trump “still has the nuclear codes but no longer has a Twitter account … because of his behavior.”
— Dave Itzkoff (@ditzkoff) January 8, 2021
— Tony Dokoupil (@tonydokoupil) January 8, 2021
— Hamed Aleaziz (@Haleaziz) January 8, 2021
— Cecilia Vega (@CeciliaVega) January 8, 2021
However, others opted to look on the somewhat brighter side, explaining that the Twitter ban could prompt Trump to shuffle over to the microblogging, free speech-focused site Parler.
— James Longman (@JamesAALongman) January 8, 2021
— Matthew Broussard (@mondaypunday) January 8, 2021
It’s worth noting that Parler is having some issues of its own, as Apple has threatened to ban the network for “failing to moderate incitements to violence and illegal activity,” according to the Wall Street Journal.
Both Google and Apple have been facing pressure to deplatform the network, with Apple reportedly giving Parler 24 hours to moderate its content or face expulsion from the iPhone maker’s App Store. Google announced that it would be removing the app from its store until Parler moderates its platform.
— brynne ridley (@BrynneRidley) January 8, 2021
— Noreen Delaney Gould (@noreen_gould) January 9, 2021
— jawn (@traxzy) January 9, 2021
Others, however, have noted that Trump still has the ability to rely on the good ol’ system of White House news releases, which presidents have historically tapped to release information, as CNN political correspondent Abby Philip noted online.
— Cameron Grant (@ImCoolCam101) January 8, 2021
— Mitchel Inkrott (@Mitchel_Inkrott) January 8, 2021
— NoelCaslerComedy (@CaslerNoel) January 8, 2021
— Mr EUnity 🇬🇧🇪🇸🇪🇺 (@gullfrazie) January 8, 2021
There was also an ironical suggestion from a Daily Wire reporter that the president might rely on the national alert system to reach out to every American.
Going to be hilarious when Trump starts using the national alert system to text every person in the nation who has a cell phone— Ryan Saavedra (@RealSaavedra) January 9, 2021
Twitter explained that the ban was imposed out of fear that Trump could use the platform to incite his nearly 90 million followers to commit additional acts of violence in the wake of the events that unfolded on Wednesday at the US Capitol.
— Mary Lambert (@marylambertsing) January 8, 2021
— Willie Gillespie (@wgweather) January 8, 2021
Others are apparently going to miss some "iconic" moments with Trump on Twitter.
How could you leave out the best one pic.twitter.com/MUugxLLa4l— What's My Name? Dunkaccino (@ferengimarx) January 9, 2021
No more Trump tweets? I am going to miss having a good laugh! pic.twitter.com/uk5HyrWkRX— Turducken13 (@Turducken13) January 9, 2021
The company’s first actions following the insurrection came in the form of a 12-hour ban of Trump on Wednesday. Both Facebook and Instagram took similar steps by imposing an indefinite ban on Trump’s accounts until at least Inauguration Day.
— Annie Gabston-Howell- (@AnnieGabstonH) January 8, 2021
— Alice Radley (@alice_radley) January 9, 2021
— Stris addict 😍 Melendaire forever ❤️ Lucifan 😈 (@dtvr12) January 9, 2021
— Thiviya (@Thiviya99) January 9, 2021
— Red Pablano🌶 (@dreamlandx22) January 8, 2021
Trump's senior aide, Donald Trump Jr., slammed Twitter's move as a representation of Orwell’s 1984 that “we are living”, adding that “big tech” is pursuing double standards in who they choose to censor.
We are living Orwell’s 1984. Free-speech no longer exists in America. It died with big tech and what’s left is only there for a chosen few.— Donald Trump Jr. (@DonaldJTrumpJr) January 9, 2021
This is absolute insanity! https://t.co/s2z8ymFsLX
So the ayatollah, and numerous other dictatorial regimes can have Twitter accounts with no issue despite threatening genocide to entire countries and killing homosexuals etc... but The President of the United States should be permanently suspended.— Donald Trump Jr. (@DonaldJTrumpJr) January 9, 2021
Mao would be proud.
Trump Jr. echoed concerns of other social media users fearing that if tech giants are free to suspend accounts of high-ranking officials, including the president himself, they can actually control to a large extent what is being said on the Internet.
It’s begun— Brandon Morse (@TheBrandonMorse) January 9, 2021
On the one hand, it’s great news that @Twitter has decided to suspend Trump’s account.— Max Berger (@maxberger) January 8, 2021
On the other hand, it’s probably not a great system if two billionaires can unilaterally decide whether political actors can reach the masses.
Celebrating that Trump was kicked off Twitter is foolish. That unelected big tech corporations have the freedom to censor who they please, including elected politicians, is THE major long-term threat to democracy, not some pro-Trump hooligans upset with the election result.— Free Assange! (@JayTharappel) January 9, 2021
Ex-secretary of state Hillary Clinton also reacted to the news, apparently glad that her rival in the 2016 election was suspended, as she retweeted her post of that year, in which she urged Trump to delete his Twitter account.
Tensions between Trump and the social media giants have remained high for several months as the president’s posts were repeatedly either flagged or removed for violating company policies and spreading false claims about the US election. In fact, over the last month, Trump kicked up efforts to remove legal protections afforded to Twitter and Facebook under Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act, to no avail.
At present, the official @POTUS Twitter account is still active, but it’s unclear whether Trump will shift to using the account for his remaining 12 days in office. The account is not typically used by the president, and only shares official statements released by his office.