Twitter suspends Mastodon’s account, making a good case for Mastodon • TechCrunch
A day after Twitter issued a new policy to explain its decision to ban an account that tracks Elon Musk’s private jet, the fallout continues.
Twitter apparently suspended its open-source competitor Mastodon from the service on Thursday afternoon. Just before his suspension, Mastodon (@joinmastodon) tweeted a link to the jet tracking account on his own service, records show.
The now-banned @ElonJet Twitter account is owned by Florida student Jack Sweeney, who also operates a number of other flight tracking bots that track flight information from public data. Sweeney’s personal account was also suspended from Twitter along with numerous bots, including one that posted updates about Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg.
In early November, Musk struck a different tone about the account, but has since backtracked, adjusting Twitter’s platform policies in light of his personal preferences. “My commitment to free speech even goes so far as not to ban the account that follows my plane, even if it’s a direct personal safety risk,” he tweeted. This tweet now comes with community notes explaining the @ElonJet saga.
Musk’s personal and political preferences have guided a number of political decisions on Twitter since the company’s new owner took over. While Musk initially said Twitter would allow all non-illegal content, he has since denied specific accounts for personal reasons.
Musk re-entered a wave of Nazis and high-level white supremacists earlier this month, but drew the line at Sandy Hook conspiracy theorist Alex Jones, citing his personal experience of fatherhood.
On Mastodon, a federated and open-source Twitter alternative, a single individual cannot set the rules for the entire platform. Mastodon’s servers – separate but open instances of the social network – are run by individuals who can set rules, but users can also switch to another server if they disagree with those choices.