Twitter Apologizes to Candace Owens for ‘Error’ in Locking Her Account

Bowen Xiao
By Bowen Xiao
August 6, 2018US News
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Twitter Apologizes to Candace Owens for ‘Error’ in Locking Her Account
Candace Owens, American conservative commentator and activist, speaks at the High School Leadership Summit, a Turning Point USA event, at George Washington University in Washington on July 26, 2018. (Samira Bouaou/The Epoch Times)

Social networking site Twitter apologized on Aug. 5. for what Twitter censors called an “error” after they locked the account of conservative commentator Candace Owens.

“Hello, we have restored your account, and we apologize for any inconvenience this may have caused,” the company said in a statement to Owens. “Twitter takes reports of violations of the Twitter Rules very seriously. After reviewing your account, it looks like we made an error.”

Owens had copied a controversial post written by Sarah Jeong, who was recently appointed to the New York Times editorial board, and changed one aspect of the post—the race that was mentioned. Jeong recently received backlash after her years-old racially charged posts slandering white people—more specifically, white men—were dug up. Jeong’s posts also included extensive anti-police rhetoric.

Two of many such posts from Jeong include: “White people have stopped breeding. You’ll all go extinct soon. This was my plan all along” and “Are white people genetically predisposed to burn faster in the sun, thus logically being only fit to live underground like groveling goblins.”

The conservative commentator swapped the race from Jeong’s old posts from “white” to “black.” Her account got locked for at least 12 hours as a result. To compare, Jeong’s account never got locked and her old posts from as far back as 2014 were still up, as of Aug 6.

Owens shared Twitter’s apology onto her account and said she was “blown away” from the support she received from her followers, referring to them as “patriots” who helped alert the company to their mistake. Twitter, Facebook, and Youtube have been roiled by controversy in recent times amid reports the companies censor conservative voices.

Charlie Kirk, the founder of Turning Point USA, a nonprofit where Owens also works, called Twitter’s actions a “Double standard” alleging that Owens was banned for being a conservative.

Amid the controversy over Jeong’s tweets, the New York Times issued a statement standing by their hiring of Jeong, writing that she was a victim of online harassment and was responding by “imitating the rhetoric.”

Twitter, in particular, has been criticized for quietly handicapping or “shadow banning” prominent Republican accounts by reducing or blocking the visibility of a user’s content. President Donald Trump said his administration will look into the practice he called “discriminatory and illegal” in a July 26, Twitter post.

For years, conservative users have been accusing Twitter of censoring them, though the full extent of the problem is not yet clear. On July 27, Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-Fla.), whose account was affected, said he filed a complaint against Twitter with the Federal Election Commission.

Since January, such complaints have been substantiated by multiple experiments, as well as admissions by current and former Twitter employees’ to undercover investigators.

Twitter officials have since denied shadow banning users, saying that tweets and search results are ranked, making some content harder to find.

From The Epoch Times

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