On Tuesday night, Twitter suspended the wildly popular “Defiant L’s” account, which is a mirror account known for spotlighting leftist hypocrisy. At the time of its suspension, the account had amassed over 350,000 followers. Surprisingly, Twitter went back on their decision and reinstated the account on Wednesday.
Twitter cited a “ban evasion” as rationale for the suspension, though the account owner has stated that these allegations were false. “The word currently is ‘ban evasion’ though I’ve never had an account suspended so I’ve never had a ban to evade,” the account owner reportedly said in a statement. They added that they would be appealing the suspension, which was granted on Wednesday.
Breaking: A message from Defiant L’s who’s account on Twitter was suspended. pic.twitter.com/37enaIJSjM
— Eliza (@elizableu) February 16, 2022
The account is named after verified Twitter user and leftist operative Majid Padellan, who runs the “BrooklynDad_Defiant” Twitter account. Padellan — who allegedly accepted more than $57,000 from a pro-Biden PAC — boasts over 900,000 Twitter followers and is known for amplifying Democrat talking points no matter what. There have been numerous instances of Paddelan adopting stances he once slandered others for taking, prompting the Defiant L’s account to compile side by sides of his contradictions and hypocrisy. From there, the account expanded to covering political Twitter hypocrisy as a whole.
— Defiant L’s (@DefiantLs) February 11, 2022
Twitter’s decision to suspend the account led to widespread backlash. “Of course this account got suspended. You can’t hold people accountable nowadays. Big no no,” Barstool Sports founder Dave Portnoy wrote in a tweet.
The account’s successful ban appeal came as a shock to many, as Twitter has purged several high-profile accounts in recent weeks and months. Twitter’s massive purge coincides with the hiring of new CEO Parag Agrawal, who has prioritized combatting the spread of “misinformation” above free speech. During a 2020 interview with Technology Review, Agrawal, who was serving as Twitter’s CTO at the time, said that Twitter should not be “bound by the First Amendment,” and should “focus less” on free speech.
“Our role is to serve a healthy public conversation and our moves are reflective of things that we believe lead to a healthier public conversation,” Agrawal said. “The kinds of things that we do about this is, focus less on thinking about free speech, but thinking about how the times have changed. One of the changes today that we see is speech is easy on the internet. Most people can speak. Where our role is particularly emphasized is who can be heard.”
U.S. Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene had her personal account permanently banned last month after accusations of violating the social media platform’s “COVID-19 misinformation” policy. Dozens of right-wing commentators, writers and candidates have been permanently banned from the platform in recent years, but in the wake of the 2020 election and subsequent banning of President Trump’s account, the platform has expanded to government officials and influencer accounts that do not violate Twitter’s terms of service.
The tech giant has long been accused of applying their terms of service arbitrarily. Most recently, the company refused to discipline verified user Dean Blundell, who amplified illegally obtained personal information of Freedom Convoy donors to his 77,000 followers. Ironically, the Defiant L’s account had a tweet pointing out Blundell’s hypocrisy less than 24 hours before it was suspended.
Twitter previously suppressed tweets referencing the New York Post’s bombshell Hunter Biden report in 2020, citing the company’s “hacked materials” policy. The information posted by Blundell was obtained through an illegal hack of Christian crowdfunding platform GiveSendGo.
— Defiant L’s (@DefiantLs) February 15, 2022