Twitter’s rules state that “you may not threaten violence against an individual or a group of people.” So when US President Donald Trump tweeted in January 2018 that he had a “nuclear button” that was “much bigger & more powerful” than the nuclear button of North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un and (a few months earlier) that North Korea “won’t be around much longer” if it continued its bellicose rhetoric, critics asked Twitter to take the tweets down for violating Twitter’s rules.
Twitter rejected those calls. Instead, the social media giant argued that the words of world leaders are newsworthy and that such newsworthiness can trump rules that might otherwise apply. But activists have kept up the pressure on Twitter. So now the company has rolled out a new policy to deal with this kind of situation.
“In the past, we’ve allowed certain tweets that violated our rules to remain on Twitter because they were in the public’s interest, but it wasn’t clear when and how we made those determinations,” a Thursday blog post says. “To fix that, we’re introducing a new notice that will provide additional clarity in these situations.”