Twitter permanently banned right-wing conspiracy theorist Alex Jones and his Infowars show for abusive behaviour, a day after Twitter chief executive Jack Dorsey testified before Congress about alleged bias against conservatives on the platform.
The company said Jones won’t be able to create new accounts on Twitter or take over any existing ones. In a tweet, it said it would continue to monitor reports about other accounts potentially associated with Jones or Infowars, and will “take action” if it finds any attempts to circumvent the ban.
Twitter said Jones posted a video on Wednesday that violates the company’s policy against “abusive behaviour.” That video showed Jones berating CNN journalist Oliver Darcy for some 10 minutes in between two congressional hearings on social media. Dorsey testified at both hearings, but did not appear to witness the confrontation.
Jones had about 900,000 followers on Twitter. Infowars had about 430,000. Jones did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
New Jersey Democratic Congressman Frank Pallone praised Twitter’s action in a tweet. “Glad Twitter is taking steps to put an end to the abusive behaviour from Alex Jones & Infowars,” the tweet stated. “Tweets designed to threaten, belittle, demean and silence individuals have no place on this platform.”
Twitter had previously suspended Jones for a week. But until now it had resisted muzzling Jones further. Other tech companies have limited Jones by suspending him for longer periods, as Facebook did, and by taking down his pages and radio stations.