After Suspending @ElonJet, Musk Tweets New Rules

Account tracked billionaire's private jet
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 14, 2022 12:16 PM CST
Updated Dec 15, 2022 12:51 AM CST
Twitter Suspends Account Musk Said He Wouldn't Ban
Tesla founder Elon Musk speaks at the ONS (Offshore Northern Seas) fair on sustainable energy in Stavanger, Norway, Monday, Aug. 29, 2022.   (Carina Johansen/NTB Scanpix via AP)
UPDATE Dec 15, 2022 12:51 AM CST

After the @ElonJet account was banned by Twitter, it was briefly reinstated, only to be banned again. The account of Jack Sweeney, @ElonJet's creator, and dozens of other accounts he operated, all remained banned Wednesday night, the Verge reports. After the accounts went dark, Elon Musk tweeted what are apparently new Twitter rules: "Any account doxxing real-time location info of anyone will be suspended, as it is a physical safety violation. This includes posting links to sites with real-time location info. Posting locations someone traveled to on a slightly delayed basis isn’t a safety problem, so is ok." The social network's private information policy was also updated to read as much. Musk later tweeted that someone had followed a car carrying his infant son, and that he would take legal action against Sweeney and other organizations that "supported harm to my family," the BBC reports.

Dec 14, 2022 12:16 PM CST

An account that Elon Musk pointed to as an example of his "commitment to free speech" at Twitter has been suspended. The @ElonJet account, which tracked the movement of Musk's private jet, was suspended Wednesday, days after its operator said its visibility had been limited, Gizmodo reports. Jack Sweeney, a University of Central Florida student, posted a screenshot over the weekend of what he said was an internal message from Ella Irwin, the company's trust and safety leader, directing her team to apply heavy visibility filtering to the account immediately, reports the Verge.

"My commitment to free speech extends even to not banning the account following my plane, even though that is a direct personal safety risk," Musk tweeted on Nov. 7, less than two weeks after he took over the company. The @ElonJet account, which Sweeney launched in June 2020, uses a bot to track Musk's jet using FAA data. Earlier this year, Musk offered Sweeney $5,000 to close the account. They exchanged a few messages, but the college freshman didn't hear from Musk again after he suggested the billionaire pay him $50,000—or offer him an internship.

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Sweeney still has accounts tracking the jet on platforms including Facebook, and the Verge notes a review of recent posts there doesn't show anything out of the ordinary, making it unclear "what changed in the month since [Musk's] tweet." Musk "flew from LA to Austin last night right after my account was suspended on Twitter," Sweeney said in a Facebook post Wednesday. (More Twitter stories.)

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