SAN FRANCISCO, CA – Social media platform Twitter has suspended several parody accounts including @MSDNCNews and @CNMneews, sending a warning to other would-be parody actors that only verified accounts can spew disinformation.
The accounts, which had over 40,000 followers combined, provided amusing commentary to the near-constant stream of election propaganda put out by legitimate sources such as @CNN and @MSNBC, often jokingly propping up long-shot candidates like John Delaney and Amy Klobuchar with doctored polls, a move often employed by legitimate news sources to manufacture consent for a political candidate.
According to Twitter’s terms of service, accounts that pose as another person, brand, or organization in a confusing or deceptive manner may be permanently suspended under Twitter’s impersonation policy, but users have noted that both parody accounts stated clearly in their account biographies that they were parody accounts and therefore not in violation of Twitter’s user agreement.
The wave of suspensions also affected several presidential candidate parody accounts including @mayo_pete2020, @BernieeSanderrs, and @FriskyMikeBloom. As of press time Chris Cillizza parody @ChrisGodzilla_ is still active.
“We pride ourselves on creating a safe and nurturing environment where polite users can obtain factually dubious information from trusted sources like CNN, Fox News, MSNBC, and the Daily Beast,” commented a representative for Twitter. “If pro-establishment voices like @JRubinBlogger and @NeeraTanden aren’t allowed to spew anti-progressive disinformation without their message being muddled by parody accounts, then what is the point of having Twitter at all?”
When pressed for further information, the representative added “we’re a corporation, so we get to decide who has a voice and who doesn’t, and we’re pretty sure the affected accounts were Russian bots. Simple as that.”