Elon Musk’s Ownership of Twitter Favors Conservative Voices, but Enables Hate Speech and Draws Criticism from Users

Elon Musk’s ownership of Twitter has made the social media platform a friendly space for conservative voices, according to sources familiar with the plans of Florida Governor, Ron DeSantis. The Governor announced his 2024 presidential campaign on Twitter with the help of Musk, who has the power to boost the profiles of conservative politicians through the platform. However, the move towards right-wing voices has also enabled hate speech from neo-Nazis and white supremacists. Musk has allowed these figures back onto the platform, although he claims that Twitter doesn’t endorse such content and won’t amplify it in people’s feeds.[0] The move has turned off some users who accuse Musk of breaking his promises to allow free speech on the site.[0]

DeSantis’ Twitter Spaces event, which was intended to kick off his presidential campaign, faced technical difficulties and crashed several times. The announcement comes after the Governor signed a bill into law that allows him to run for president while still serving as Florida’s Governor. The new law also includes sweeping new restrictions on how third-party registration groups operate, which have been criticized by Democrats for negatively affecting efforts to enroll minorities.[1]

DeSantis’ presidential campaign places him in direct competition with former President Donald Trump, who has held a consistent polling lead over the Republican primary field.[2] Trump has criticized DeSantis’ campaign launch, writing on his social media platform, “Wow! The DeSanctus TWITTER launch is a DISASTER![3] His whole campaign will be a disaster.[3] WATCH!

0. “Why Ron DeSantis and Tucker Carlson love Elon Musk and Twitter” Vox.com, 24 May. 2023, https://www.vox.com/technology/2023/5/24/23735940/elon-musk-ron-desantis-twitter-tucker-carlson-2024-election

1. “DeSantis signs law allowing him to run for president while remaining governor” The Washington Post, 25 May. 2023, https://www.washingtonpost.com/nation/2023/05/24/desantis-florida-election-law

2. “Not just Disney: DeSantis brings history of business battles to the presidential campaign” CNBC, 24 May. 2023, https://www.cnbc.com/2023/05/24/desantis-business-fights-disney-esg.html

3. “Trump team trolls Ron DeSantis launch” NBC News, 24 May. 2023, https://www.nbcnews.com/politics/2024-election/trump-team-trolls-ron-desantis-launch-rcna82446

4. “Opinion: Trump has good reason to fear DeSantis” CNN, 24 May. 2023, https://www.cnn.com/2023/05/24/opinions/2024-presidential-election-desantis-trump-jennings/index.html

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