Elon Musk says he would reverse Donald Trump's Twitter ban
He said the decision to ban Trump from the platform was "morally wrong and flat-out stupid".
Elon Musk has said he would reverse Twitter's banning of Donald Trump if his deal to buy the platform is successful.
The former US president was permanently banned from the social networking service in January 2021, after the attack his supporters carried out on the US Capitol.
Twitter said it made the decision after determining Trump repeatedly violated the company regulations, ruling that his Tweets were “highly likely to encourage and inspire people to replicate the criminal acts that took place at the US Capitol on 6 January, 2021”.
However, on Tuesday (10 May), Musk appeared virtually at the Financial Times Future of the Car Summit and was asked if he plans to let the former US president back on Twitter.
"I've talked with [Twitter co-founder] Jack Dorsey about this. He and I are of the same mind which is that permanent bans should be extremely rare and really reserved for accounts that are bots or spam scam accounts, where there's just no legitimacy to the account at all," Musk replied.
"I do think that it was not correct to ban Donald Trump. I think that was a mistake because it alienated a large part of the country and did not ultimately result in Donald Trump not having a voice.
"He is now going to be on Truth Social as will a large part of the sort of the right in the United States.
"And so, I think this could end up being frankly worse than having a single forum where everyone can debate.
"So, I guess the answer is that I would reverse the permanent ban.
"Obviously, I don't own Twitter yet so this is not like a thing that will definitely happen because what if I don't own Twitter?"
Musk said he believes the platform should not have permanent bans but clarified that does not mean "somebody gets to say whatever they want to say."
"If they say something that is illegal or otherwise just destructive to the world then there should be perhaps a timeout, a temporary suspension or that particular Tweet should be made invisible or have very limited traction.
"But I think permanent bans just fundamentally undermine trust in Twitter as a town square where everyone can voice their opinion.
"I think it was a morally bad decision to be clear and foolish in the extreme."
Further questioned on the topic, Musk then added:
"Banning Trump from Twitter didn't end Trump's voice. It will amplify it among the right.
"And this is why it is morally wrong and flat-out stupid."