For Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey, Donald Trump’s tweets — which have condoned violence, racism and sexism — are not a problem. Trump is using the service as a “microphone for the world,” Dorsey told Bloomberg in a question-and-answer piece published Monday.
“I think we provide a very significant role in empowering dialogue around something that is truly important, for not just this country, but for the world,” Dorsey continued.
That thought aligns similarly with what Dorsey told NBC “Today” host Matt Lauer on Friday when he appeared in celebration of Twitter’s 10th birthday and was specifically asked about Trump’s use of the platform.
But when Bloomberg asked more from Dorsey on Trump, if he is using Twitter to “propagate misinformation and hate” and if that bothered him, the CEO shied away from condoning anything Trump has said. Instead, Dorsey highlighted the diversity of voices on Twitter, some of which have critiqued Trump.
“Well, there's a counter of all the people who are correcting and critiquing and commenting on what he's saying, as well, so I think all of this is about balance. We have the world talking on this thing about the world. So we see every spectrum of idea and conversation,” Dorsey told Bloomberg.
And yet, Twitter does have standards and condones any abusive behavior on the services. Twitter’s terms of service forbids any accounts from making violent threats or promoting violence, whether that be directly or indirectly.
Twitter users cannot engage in harassment of other users, and they must not “threaten other people on the basis of race, ethnicity, national origin, sexual orientation, gender, gender identity, religious affiliation, age, disability, or disease,” the rules read.
People have argued that Trump’s behavior on Twitter is abusive and hateful, in particular to certain groups. Take, for example, his tweet against Fox News contributor Meghan McCain, where Trump called her “angry and obnoxious,” which was listed in a Forbes round-up of “Donald Trump’s 10 Most Offensive Tweets.”
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) September 5, 2015
Trump was also criticized for his tweets during riots in Baltimore in January, where he referred to people in Baltimore as “thugs” and noted President Barack Obama’s race:
Our great African American President hasn't exactly had a positive impact on the thugs who are so happily and openly destroying Baltimore!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) April 28, 2015
Dorsey has publicly promised to make Twitter safer, which was listed as his fourth priority in the company’s fourth-quarter earnings call in February. He created the Trust & Safety Council, a group of more than 40 organizations that are assigned to strategize how to improve Twitter.
Twitter also allows people to mute or block other users on the service, as Dorsey noted to Lauer last week. Dorsey has not blocked anyone on the service, however.
“I find that for anything that's said, there's always a counterpoint, and there's always something in the middle. And it's always available to people,” Dorsey told Bloomberg.