Belching human smokestack Alex Jones is scrubbing his Twitter accounts for their most overt violations of Twitter’s Terms of Service.
On Thursday, CNN published a list of InfoWars and Jones tweets that contained fun content like individual harassment and degradation on the basis of religion and gender identity. These are behaviors that a reasonable reading of Twitter’s updated 2017 Terms of Service would seem to prohibit.
The news network sent the list to Twitter, after executives repeatedly said that Twitter was allowing Jones and InfoWars to remain on the platform because the accounts had not violated Twitter’s Terms of Service. Jack Dorsey has pledged to “enforce” Twitter’s own rules if Jones ever violates them.
Challenging Dorsey’s assertion, CNN found that Jones had posted on Twitter many of the same pieces of content that had prompted Jones’ booting from Facebook, YouTube, and Apple Music. Twitter confirmed to CNN on Friday that seven of the tweets CNN had spotlighted did indeed violate the terms (it did not specify which tweets).
But as of today, and despite the admitted violations, Jones and InfoWars remain on the platform. That’s because Twitter exec Del Harvey said that the company won’t punish Jones for his past behavior. And according to CNN, Twitter can’t use the violating tweets that occurred after the ToS updates if it ever does build a case against Jones to kick him off — because Twitter didn’t make the concession before Jones himself took action.
As spotted by CNN, Jones told viewers on his Friday show that he had instructed his staff to delete the offending tweets. He called the removal of the tweets (that called Muslims pedophiles and promoted the idea that the Sandy Hook school shooting was a hoax, among other things) taking “the super high road.” He also maintained that the tweets did not in fact violate the terms. Classy and non-contradictory as always, Jones.
It makes perfect sense that Jones would scramble — if only the barest minimum way possible — to ensure that his embattled InfoWars empire remained on Twitter. Last week, YouTube, Facebook, Apple Music, and a host of other social platforms finally dropped the hammer on Jones for his egregious and terms-violating behavior, that had gone on un-policed for far too long.
Now, Twitter is the only major social media platform that Jones has left — which has prompted praise from Jones’ conservative allies, and outrage from critics of Twitter’s seemingly appeasing and contradictory enforcement of its terms.
For now, Jones is willing to play ball with Twitter, while also playing the victim. That’s a win for Jones, and a loss for the world, that falls squarely on Twitter’s shrugging shoulders.