Twitter said Tuesday that they would be taking “strong enforcement action” to ban or limit accounts associated with QAnon, a loosely-organized group on the internet that baselessly believes a high-ranking government official is communicating with them through secret messages.
“We will permanently suspend accounts Tweeting about these topics that we know are engaged in violations of our multi-account policy, coordinating abuse around individual victims, or are attempting to evade a previous suspension — something we’ve seen more of in recent weeks,” Twitter said, per NPR.
We will permanently suspend accounts Tweeting about these topics that we know are engaged in violations of our multi-account policy, coordinating abuse around individual victims, or are attempting to evade a previous suspension — something we’ve seen more of in recent weeks.
— Twitter Safety (@TwitterSafety) July 22, 2020
The bans will be rolled out throughout this week, Twitter added, and the company “will continue to review this activity across our service and update our rules and enforcement approach again if necessary.” (RELATED: PARSCALE: Twitter Censors President Trump But Not Communist China? Something Doesn’t Add Up)
“As we work at scale to protect the public conversation in the face of evolving threats, we’ll continue to lead with transparency and offer more context on our efforts,” they continued.
Co-director of UCLA’s Center for Critical Internet Inquiry Sarah Roberts called Twitter’s move “bold” because of “the difficulty and resources requires to chase down, remove and block such content — and its creators — from the platform,” NPR reported.
QAnon has enjoyed support from some prominent celebrities, including Roseanne Barr and Curt Schilling. The claims spread online by the group, which include a belief that there are federal forces conspiring to overthrow President Donald Trump, have had real-world consequences.
An Arizona man pleaded guilty to a terrorist threat after he said QAnon inspired him to block a bridge by the Hoover Dam with an armored car, NPR reported. The lawyer for a 24-year-old who was charged for shooting a New York mob boss argued that his client was under a delusion when he committed the crime because he was so involved with QAnon, according to NPR.