Twitter disables the Elon Musk jet tracking account
- Tech News
- December 15, 2022
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Twitter has disabled the account that provided real-time updates about Musk’s private jet after the Tesla owner threatened legal action.
Elon Musk threatened legal action against Twitter Inc. after the company deactivated an account that was live-tracking his private jet on the social media platform. The entrepreneur claimed his son had been unintentionally being tracked by a “crazy stalker.”
The account was suspended just one month after Musk, who paid $44 billion to acquire Twitter in October, declared that he was committed to free expression and would not ban the account.
Prior to the suspension, Jack Sweeney, a 20-year-old university student, who runs ElonJet, had been following the movements of Musk’s private jet using information that was in the public domain.
At the time of reporting, Sweeney’s other accounts were also suspended.
Reuters asked Twitter and Sweeney for responses, but neither party provided any.
After stating that the sharing of “live location information” was against its policy, Twitter temporarily reinstated the “bot,” or automated, account before once more removing it.
In a tweet from November, Musk claimed that, despite the clear risk to his personal safety, his commitment to free expression “extends even to not blocking the account following my plane.”
Musk declared on Wednesday that any account that divulges a person’s current whereabouts will be suspended since it violates physical safety.
A person or organisation is “doxed” when private information about them, like their home address or phone number, is made public.
Posting areas someone visited with a short delay is acceptable, according to Musk, because it poses no safety risks.
Along with linking the tracking accounts to the harassment, the billionaire also tweeted that one of his sons, little X, had experienced it.
He claimed that a psychotic stalker had followed the car transporting Little X around LA the night before, thinking it was him. The stalker then stopped the car from moving and climbed up on the hood.
“Legal action is being initiated against Sweeney and the groups that encouraged violence to my family,” the statement reads.
The suspension “surprises many people because he openly declared he wouldn’t do it,” Sweeney, a student at the University of Central Florida who also runs similar bot accounts tracking Musk’s flight on Facebook, Instagram, and Telegram, told BuzzFeed.
It merely demonstrates how flexible the rules are, in his words, for anybody they please.
Ella Irwin, Twitter’s vice president of trust and safety, asked that the account be filtered and made less visible to users, Sweeney tweeted on Saturday.
Sweeney claimed in prior talks with the media that Musk offered him $5,000 to close the account in 2021, but he declined the offer.
The rich internet entrepreneurs Mark Zuckerberg, Jeff Bezos, and Bill Gates’ Twitter accounts that tracked their flights were also suspended.
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