Twitter has blocked right-wing conspiracy theorist Alex Jones from tweeting on his personal account for one week after one of his posts violated the platform’s policies.
A Twitter spokesperson confirmed to The Hill that Jones's account will have limited functions but won't be suspended. The platform is additionally requiring he delete a tweet that contained a broadcast in violation of the site's rules.
If an account violates the platform's policies, it can be placed in "read-only mode," meaning the user can view their timeline and send direct messages, but can't tweet, retweet or like content.
A reporter for Buzzfeed tweeted that the offending post was a Periscope video in which he tells listeners to get "battle rifles" ready against Antifa and the mainstream media.
This is part of the offending Periscope video as captured by Media Matters. https://t.co/eOTjXqXmL9— Ryan Mac (@RMac18) August 15, 2018
Jones, who founded Infowars, is best known for spreading conspiracy theories about the Sandy Hook school shooting and the shooting at a Parkland, Fla., high school earlier this year.
He threatened special counsel Robert MuellerRobert (Bob) MuellerSenate Democrats urge Garland not to fight court order to release Trump obstruction memo Why a special counsel is guaranteed if Biden chooses Yates, Cuomo or Jones as AG Barr taps attorney investigating Russia probe origins as special counsel MORE in one recent video, and claimed Democrats planned to start a second civil war on the Fourth of July.
Tech companies have faced growing pressure to censor his content, which advocates say promotes conspiracy theories and encourages threatening behavior.
Twitter has been one of the lone holdouts among major tech companies in allowing Jones to remain on its platform, largely unfiltered. YouTube, Spotify and Apple music all removed Jones' accounts earlier this month.
Facebook last week deleted four pages belonging to Jones, including his personal fan page and his flagship Infowars page.
Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey sent a series of tweets last week to explain the company's decision to keep Jones' accounts on the platform.
“We didn’t suspend Alex Jones or Infowars yesterday,” Dorsey wrote last Wednesday. “We know that’s hard for many but the reason is simple: He hasn’t violated our rules. We’ll enforce if he does. And we’ll continue to promote a healthy conversational environment by ensuring tweets aren’t artificially amplified.”
Dorsey drew criticism from some in the media when he suggested the best way to counteract Jones's conspiracy theories was for reporters to "document, validate, and refute such information directly."
Accounts like Jones' can often sensationalize issues and spread unsubstantiated rumors, so it’s critical journalists document, validate, and refute such information directly so people can form their own opinions. This is what serves the public conversation best.— jack (@jack) August 8, 2018