Donald Trump received a permanent suspension from Twitter two days after the fatal insurrection at the U.S. Capitol.
"After close review of recent Tweets from the @realDonaldTrump account and the context around them — specifically how they are being received and interpreted on and off Twitter — we have permanently suspended the account due to the risk of further incitement of violence," Twitter announced on January 8th.
Enough time has since passed to measure the early impact of Trump's lifetime ban from the social media platform.
"Online misinformation about election fraud plunged 73 percent after several social media sites suspended President Trump and key allies last week, research firm Zignal Labs has found, underscoring the power of tech companies to limit the falsehoods poisoning public debate when they act aggressively," The Washington Post reported Saturday. "The new research by the San Francisco-based analytics firm reported that conversations about election fraud dropped from 2.5 million mentions to 688,000 mentions across several social media sites in the week after Trump was banned from Twitter."
"Election disinformation had for months been a major subject of online misinformation, beginning even before the Nov. 3 election and pushed heavily by Trump and his allies," the newspaper noted. "The findings, from Jan. 9 through Friday, highlight how falsehoods flow across social media sites — reinforcing and amplifying each other — and offer an early indication of how concerted actions against misinformation can make a difference. Twitter's ban of Trump on Jan. 8, after years in which @realDonaldTrump was a potent online megaphone, has been particularly significant in curbing his ability to push misleading claims about what state and federal officials have called a free and fair election on Nov. 3."
The findings show the power of content moderation.
"The research by Zignal and other groups suggests that a powerful, integrated disinformation ecosystem — composed of high-profile influencers, rank-and-file followers and Trump himself — was central to pushing millions of Americans to reject the election results and may have trouble surviving without his social media accounts," The Post reported. "Researchers have found that Trump's tweets were retweeted by supporters at a remarkable rate, no matter the subject, giving him a virtually unmatched ability to shape conversation online."
Read the full report.