President Donald Trump's threatening tweets against North Korea and Kim Jong Un have sparked a wave of controversy that has only worsened as Twitter refuses to remove them.
Just heard Foreign Minister of North Korea speak at U.N. If he echoes thoughts of Little Rocket Man, they won't be around much longer!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) September 24, 2017
North Korea’s foreign minister said that Trump’s tweets could be equivalent to a declaration of war, and under international law, North Korea can legally shoot down United States military planes even if they’re not in their airspace, NPR reports.
"For the past couple of days, we had earnestly hoped that the war of words between North Korea and the U.S. would not lead to action," foreign minister Ri Yong Ho said in remarks translated for NPR by journalist Jihye Lee. "However, Trump had ultimately declared war again last weekend, by saying regarding our leadership, that he will make it unable to last longer."
Twitter received an influx of criticism for not using its authority to remove the tweets. The company responded in a thread explaining their terrible policy regarding taking down users' tweets.
THREAD: Some of you have been asking why we haven't taken down the Tweet mentioned here: https://t.co/CecwG0qHmq 1/6— Twitter PublicPolicy (@Policy) September 25, 2017
We hold all accounts to the same Rules, and consider a number of factors when assessing whether Tweets violate our Rules 2/6— Twitter PublicPolicy (@Policy) September 25, 2017
Among the considerations is "newsworthiness" and whether a Tweet is of public interest 3/6— Twitter PublicPolicy (@Policy) September 25, 2017
This has long been internal policy and we'll soon update our public-facing rules to reflect it. We need to do better on this, and will 4/6— Twitter PublicPolicy (@Policy) September 25, 2017
Twitter is committed to transparency and keeping people informed about what's happening in the world 5/6— Twitter PublicPolicy (@Policy) September 25, 2017
We’ll continue to be guided by these fundamental principles 6/6— Twitter PublicPolicy (@Policy) September 25, 2017
The issue with Twitter's explanation is that Trump is using the platform as a means of fear-mongering and inciting war. This type of dangerous, threatening rhetoric should not be considered "newsworthy."
Instead, Twitter should be taking more responsibility in policing these reckless actions that are endangering the lives of all Americans.
Needless to say, the response from civilian social media users was overwhelmingly negative, with many calling Twitter out for being biased and hypocritical.
So, the tweet could be a threat from Trump, but because he's POTUS, it remains? Sounds inconsistent and biased.— Mike Rana ✈️📱🇺🇸 (@michaelranaii) September 25, 2017
It also completely contradicts their statement that they treat all accounts the same… disappointed @jack— George Soros (?) (@williamlegate) September 25, 2017
You allow POTUS to abuse and make threats because those are "newsworthy", even though their impact is far worse than average troll.— Katie Mack (@AstroKatie) September 25, 2017
Unless it's the account of a leader threatening to kill people through extreme violence. Then, anything goes.— HRM Astartiel #TAK🌸 (@Astartiel) September 25, 2017
So as long as someone's popular, they can threaten to murder whoever they want. Glad you cleared this incompetence up.— Jim McDuck (@JamesWatch) September 26, 2017
You do not hold accounts to same rules. Trump is a repeat offender of trolling people and inciting violence against others. DO BETTER.— Kris Colvin (@KrisColvin) September 25, 2017
Hmm... I guess Trump wasn't lying. pic.twitter.com/BkQKc57XqB— Stephen H (@SirStephenH) September 26, 2017
Banner/Thumbnail Photo Credit: Reuters, BRENDAN MCDERMID