Elon Musk will bring the worst people on the internet back to Twitter

The decision to act on Twitter’s years of moderation effectively trashed Musk’s original promise: to create a diverse council that would help judge critical moderation decisions. Musk backtracked on that idea, later blaming a “political/social activist group” for breaking the alleged “agreement” — a claim nobody verified and advertisers deny. Twitter has spent a hard-earned year clipping users from the service, and many of the bans it has issued are related to egregious abuse, harassment and misinformation.

The poll was a shocker, with 72.4% of respondents voting “yes” to un-banning accounts, from a pool of over 3 million votes. It’s hard to know WHO vote, but it’s worth noting that Musk spent a long time getting out of buying Twitter on the grounds that the service was filled with bots and unverified accounts.

It is not yet clear which accounts will be returned. Musk said accounts that “broke the law or engaged in serious spam” would not be granted “amnesty.” But doing something illegal is a very high bar for moderation because most people don’t just break the law by being horrible people. Even Musk has laid out some bare-minimum standards beyond breaking the law; Although he spent a lot of time on right-wing charges, He indicated opposition Someone like Alex Jones for the idea of ​​giving back to his website.

Even so, a blanket recovery of most suspended accounts would likely have numerous and widespread unintended consequences — especially in areas where Twitter’s moderation and compliance capabilities have been eroded by the company’s new leadership.

Elon Musk began his Twitter reign by declaring that “comedy is legit.” Now it seems almost anything goes.