Twitter gives internet troll Milo Yiannopoulos the axe, bans him permanently – as it should

Twitter gives internet troll Milo Yiannopoulos the axe, bans him permanently – as it should

Following backlash for encouraging harassment against Ghostbusters actress Leslie Jones, Twitter has permanently suspended notorious rightwing writer and internet troll Milo Yiannopoulos, better known as @nero.

Earlier this week, the Breitbart tech editor urged a slew of hateful reactions against Jones that ultimately forced the actress to quit Twitter to avoid further abuse.

Shortly after Jones voiced her complaints against the ruthless vitriol she was facing, Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey reached out offering to lend the actress a hand.

This eventually resulted in Yiannopoulos’ suspension. At the time of the ban, the controversial writer had over 300,000 followers.

Yiannopoulos has previously had other run-ins with Twitter and has been suspended from the service for violating its terms of service on multiple occasions. Back in 2014, the writer temporarily had his ‘verified’ badge revoked, prompting fans to come to his defence with the hashtag #JeSuisMilo.

Twitter has not yet specified the exact conditions of the suspension, but rumours suggest his account won’t be reinstated soon.

The social media platform responded to the ban with the following statement:

People should be able to express diverse opinions and beliefs on Twitter. But no one deserves to be subjected to targeted abuse online, and our rules prohibit inciting or engaging in the targeted abuse or harassment of others. Over the past 48 hours in particular, we’ve seen an uptick in the number of accounts violating these policies and have taken enforcement actions against these accounts, ranging from warnings that also require the deletion of Tweets violating our policies to permanent suspension.

We know many people believe we have not done enough to curb this type of behavior on Twitter. We agree. We are continuing to invest heavily in improving our tools and enforcement systems to better allow us to identify and take faster action on abuse as it’s happening and prevent repeat offenders.

Chiming in on the ban, Yiannopoulos told Breitbart that:

Like all acts of the totalitarian regressive left, this will blow up in their faces, netting me more adoring fans. We’re winning the culture war, and Twitter just shot themselves in the foot.

The suspension of the popular writer has spurred heated discussions on the issue of free speech.

While fans of Yiannopoulos are passionately showing their support with the hashtag #FreeMilo, it should be noted that the writer has persistently disregarded Twitter’s terms of service and – even worse – resorted to shaming tactics targeting particular individuals.

It is not strictly free speech that is at stake here, but basic human decency – and Yiannopoulos needs to take responsibility for his actions.

As our own Bryan Clark summed it up:

on The Guardian

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