‘Streisand Effect’: Elon Musk Bans Account That He Said He Wouldn’t, Unbans It, Then Bans It Again
GRUENHEIDE, GERMANY - MARCH 22: Tesla CEO Elon Musk during the official opening of the new Tesla electric car manufacturing plant on March 22, 2022 near Gruenheide, Germany. The new plant, officially called the Gigafactory Berlin-Brandenburg, is producing the Model Y as well as electric car batteries.
Christian Marquardt – Pool/Getty Images

Twitter CEO Elon Musk banned a Twitter account on Wednesday that he previously stated he would not ban, and then he unbanned the account after facing public backlash only to re-ban the account a short time later.

Musk said that the decision to ban Jack Sweeney, a sophomore at the University of Central Florida, was based on security concerns, which appears to be the same reason why he will no longer sign autographs for fans.

“My commitment to free speech extends even to not banning the account following my plane, even though that is a direct personal safety risk,” Musk tweeted back in November.

Sweeny created the account @ElonJet because he thought “it’d be cool to track how Musk managed his business empire,” The Washington Post reports.

Musk banned the account, banned Sweeney’s personal account several hours later, and then banned “dozens of other accounts he operates.”

Musk then unbanned @ElonJet for a short period of time before re-banning the account later in the afternoon.

Musk also banned the ability of Twitter users to post links to Sweeney’s other accounts on other social media platforms.

“We can’t complete this request because this link has been identified by Twitter or our partners as being potentially harmful,” the message said. “Visit our Help Center to learn more.”

Twitter then changed its policies surrounding posting private information.

“When someone shares an individual’s live location on Twitter, there is an increased risk of physical harm,” the company tweeted. “Moving forward, we’ll remove Tweets that share this information, and accounts dedicated to sharing someone else’s live location will be suspended.”

Musk then tweeted that the new policy happened because he claimed that there was an incident involving a stalker and his son.

“Any account doxxing real-time location info of anyone will be suspended, as it is a physical safety violation,” he tweeted. “This includes posting links to sites with real-time location info. Posting locations someone traveled to on a slightly delayed basis isn’t a safety problem, so is ok.”

“Last night, car carrying lil X in LA was followed by crazy stalker (thinking it was me), who later blocked car from moving & climbed onto hood,” he continued. “Legal action is being taken against Sweeney & organizations who supported harm to my family.”

Some of Musk’s biggest fans, who Musk responds to, like Whole Mars Catalog, urged the billionaire to stop what he was doing.

“Elon, he is just a kid. Don’t take legal action against him,” the account tweeted. “It’s bad press + the streisand effect. I understand you must be angry when the safety of your kid is being put at risk, but still dealing with Greenspan I wouldn’t want anyone else to go through that.”

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