Twitter Suspends Accounts of Keith Olbermann, Aaron Rupar and More Journalists Who Cover Elon Musk

Twitter appeared to suspend the accounts of several high-profile journalists who cover Elon Musk on Thursday night, including Keith Olbermann and Aaron Rupar.

The New York Times’ Ryan Mac, The Washington Post’s Drew Harwell, CNN’s Donie O’Sullivan, Mashable’s Matt Binder, The Intercept’s Micah Lee and Tony Webster have also been suspended, according to NBC News.

Though it is unclear why the accounts were suspended, The Washington Post reports that many of the journalists had written about Musk banning the account on Wednesday that tracks the movements of his private jet, and had also been critical of Musk on Twitter. Some of the journalists had tweeted a link to the tracking account on Twitter rival Mastodon Social.

“Elon says he is a free speech champion and he is banning journalists for exercising free speech. I think that calls into question his commitment,” Harwell told CNN in a statement after his suspension from the platform.

“The impulsive and unjustified suspension of a number of reporters, including CNN’s Donie O’Sullivan, is concerning but not surprising,” a CNN spokesperson said in a statement to Variety. “Twitter’s increasing instability and volatility should be of incredible concern for everyone who uses Twitter. We have asked Twitter for an explanation, and we will reevaluate our relationship based on that response.”

Also on Thursday night, Mastodon’s account was suspended from Twitter. Earlier in the day, Mastodon had tweeted a link to the private jet tracker’s account on its own platform.

The jet-tracking bot was created by Florida college student Jack Sweeney — whose own personal Twitter account has also been suspended. Musk tweeted on Wednesday, “Real-time posting of someone else’s location violates [Twitter’s] doxxing policy, but delayed posting of locations are OK.”

Twitter’s Private and Information and Media Policy was updated on Wednesday to include the following: “If your account is dedicated to sharing someone’s live location, your account will be automatically suspended.” In addition, the page outlining the policy now says that content prohibited on the service includes “live location information, including information shared on Twitter directly or links to 3rd-party URL(s) of travel routes, actual physical location, or other identifying information that would reveal a person’s location, regardless if this information is publicly available.”

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