On 10 January 2017, online users encountered what appeared at first glance to be a news report that Twitter was deleting the prolific social media account of President-elect Donald Trump over racist remarks he had allegedly made via that platform:
Twitter announced today that it will delete Donald Trump’s account sometime within the next 48 hours because of what the company calls “Trump’s racist and divisive rhetoric”.
“Twitter will not tolerate active users, whose only message is one of hate, racism and intolerance. Donald Trump may have been elected to the White House, but at least someone can stand up to him, for the American people and say, ‘No Mr. Trump, we are not with you,'” a spokesman for Twitter told reporters. “Everything he stands for is backwards. His appointment of racist Steve Bannon, the way he unites hate for the Muslim people in this country, his support of white power organizations. He appointed a cabinet full of billionaires and millionaires to standup for the lower and middle class. The person he puts in charge of the EPA denies climate change. His person in charge of education doesn’t believe in public education. The American people should not accept this. The children of this country deserve a leader who will build a successful future for them. Twitter will not aid and abet him as he makes a mockery of the Presidency. We have no choice but to delete his account.”
A source close to the Trump transition team has told CNN News that President-elect Trump has already set up a new Twitter account, @WHDonaldTrump, which the president-elect plans to begin using immediately after Twitter shuts down his primary account. That same source also said that if Twitter shuts down that account, he will simply keep making more new accounts.
There was no truth to this report, which was nothing more than a fabrication posted by a fake news purveyor using trademarks illegally appropriated from a legitimate news organization (CNN). The claim was clearly false, as President-elect Trump was busy tweeting as usual on the morning of 11 January 2017:
I win an election easily, a great "movement" is verified, and crooked opponents try to belittle our victory with FAKE NEWS. A sorry state!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 11, 2017