A hot potato: President Trump has always had a love-hate relationship with social media, but recent times have seen him lean more toward the latter emotion. Things are about to get even more rocky, now that his official Twitch account has been suspended and the Reddit community r/The_Donald has been banned.
Trump has never been one to hide his dislike for Jeff Bezos, but that didn’t stop the president’s team from joining Amazon-owned Twitch back in November. Following the account’s broadcast of Trump’s recent Tulsa campaign rally, Twitch has decided to suspend the channel.
It seems Twitch took issue with the section of Trump’s speech that mentions “many, many, many” cases of “a very tough hombre” breaking into the home of a young woman at night. The streaming site also cited the recent rebroadcast of his 2016 campaign event, in which he said the infamous words: “They’re [Mexico] sending people that have lots of problems, and they’re bringing those problems with us. They’re bringing drugs. They’re bringing crime. They’re rapists.”
Twitch never said how long the suspension of Trump’s account will last. “Like anyone else, politicians on Twitch must adhere to our Terms of Service and Community Guidelines. We do not make exceptions for political or newsworthy content, and will take action on content reported to us that violates our rules,” the platform told TechCrunch.
In addition to the Twitch suspension, one of the internet’s most vocal Trump support groups, r/The_Donald, is one of around 2,000 communities banned after Reddit updated its policies on hate speech.
The subreddit, which has been no stranger to controversy over the years, boasted over 790,000 members. It had no official connection to Trump, though he did an AMA (Ask Me Anything) while a presidential candidate back in 2016.
Reddit CEO Steve Huffman writes: “All communities on Reddit must abide by our content policy in good faith. We banned r/The_Donald because it has not done so, despite every opportunity. The community has consistently hosted and upvoted more rule-breaking content than average (Rule 1), antagonized us and other communities (Rules 2 and 8), and its mods have refused to meet our most basic expectations. Until now, we’ve worked in good faith to help them preserve the community as a space for its users—through warnings, mod changes, quarantining, and more.”
Another large community banned under the updated rules is r/ChapoTrapHouse, a spinoff of the leftist podcast. The vast majority of the 2,000 subreddits were inactive.
Social media giants have been feeling the heat as companies suspend advertising as a protest against the platforms' inaction against hate speech. The ad boycott against Facebook, which said it doesn’t want to be an “arbiter of truth,” has seen its share price fall, wiping $7 billion off CEO Mark Zuckerberg’s wealth.