In the past, Twitter has been known to censor conservative voices. Now, it appears that the social media website has targeted conservative accounts in what is being labeled as the #TwitterLockout.
About the Lockout
According to conservatives on Twitter, they've been drastically losing followers and some accounts have been completely removed from the website. Twitter, on the other hand, says they're purging the website of all bots, especially after claims of Russian bots meddling in U.S. elections.
"Twitter's tools are apolitical," the company told Fox News."As part of our ongoing work in safety, we identify suspicious account behaviors that indicate automated activity or violations of our policies around having multiple accounts, or abuse. We also take action on any accounts we find that violate our terms of service, including asking account owners to confirm a phone number so we can confirm a human is behind it. That's why some people may be experiencing suspensions or locks."
The Conservative Outcry
Conservatives quickly took to Twitter to let their followers know that the purge is a real thing that's taking place.
Twitter is currently purging the followers on conservative accounts only. I just lost 3000 followers in one minute. Check out the trending hashtag to confirm that it is ONLY conservative accounts that are being affected.— Candace Owens (@RealCandaceO) February 21, 2018
Holding for an explanation...#twitterlockout
#TwitterLockOut— Philip Schuyler (@FiveRights) February 21, 2018
I lost over 3,000 followers.
What the hell is going on here?
Hello @jack a lot of people are asking about #TwitterLockOut could the company please provide the criteria for erasing followers while folks sleep. I know there is a lot of pressure to be more responsible in curbing certain actions but that shouldn't extend to muting opinions— Charles V Payne (@cvpayne) February 21, 2018
The twitter purge is real. You may have to refollow me after last night if you’re interested in my content. Twitter blocked me from twitter ads last night and purged thousands of followers. Spread the word. #TwitterLockOut @TwitterSupport @jack @twitter— Dan Bongino (@dbongino) February 21, 2018
Some people decided to use this opportunity to find new followers and interact with conservatives they had yet to "meet" before.
So, this #TwitterLockOut is going to give me motivation to follow EVERYONE who is #MAGA. Before today, I only followed those whose tweets I read or those from #Pittsburgh. Twitter allows lots of crap from the left.— Deplorable ShoeLady (@ShoeLady8) February 21, 2018
If you lost followers during the #TwitterLockOut just comment on this post and we can all follow each other back. This is a great opportunity. It's actually a great opportunity to make new friends. If you make your own post like this, I will retweet it too. Just tag me.— Neesiepoo (@MiningDenise) February 21, 2018
Project Veritas used the lockout as an opportunity to remind conservatives of what Twitter has done in the past.
Is the #TwitterLockOut what Twitter Trust & Safety Manager Olinda Hassan said they're "working on" in order to "get the shitty people to not show up?"— Project Veritas (@Project_Veritas) February 21, 2018
Read our report to see how Twitter plans to "ban a way of talking": https://t.co/5TnueTZCle pic.twitter.com/9rtmjRaswy
Looks like thousands of Twitter users committed the thought crime of tweeting about "God," "the American flag," and "guns," and were taken off the platform. Our undercover reporting into Twitter showed those terms indicate to engineers you are "for sure a bot." #TwitterLockOut pic.twitter.com/hI88iUEcCD— James O'Keefe (@JamesOKeefeIII) February 21, 2018
Twitter statement on #TwitterLockOut: "Twitter’s tools are apolitical, and we enforce our rules without political bias."— Project Veritas (@Project_Veritas) February 21, 2018
Are the engineers using the "apolitical tools" acting accordingly? Former Twitter Content Review Agent said, "it was more discretion on your view point." pic.twitter.com/rPpHS8L6bl
The Liberal Response
Liberals were quick to cheer about the #TwitterLockout, or what they're referring to as "The Purge." For many of them, Twitter's alleged censorship was nothing more than a source of entertainment.
Trumpers try to understand; the followers you are losing tonight are not real people. They were bots and @Twitter decided enough was enough. You aren’t being censored. You are being awakened to the FACT that you were engaging with hostile foreign agents! #TwitterLockOut pic.twitter.com/zK7RSlm8Rg— Corey Reynolds (@coreyreynoldsLA) February 21, 2018
If you're looking for a good time, look no further: New York's hottest club #TwitterLockOut has everything. Faux social media victimization, frenzied paranoia, wishful martyrdom, and falling follower count panic. pic.twitter.com/LY1J2bYodJ— Orphaned Apparel (@orphanedapparel) February 21, 2018
I don't seem to have lost any followers under #TwitterLockout, of course, I'm one of the architects of The Plan so you wouldn't expect me to— Oliver Willis (@owillis) February 21, 2018
Enjoying watching the MAGA crowd reenact “The Leftovers.” #TwitterLockOut— Natalie Finn (@natfinnonE) February 21, 2018