Twitter announced on Sunday that it is discouraging users from promoting rival social media accounts on its platform. However, it seems that the company is now backtracking on this decision. In a now-deleted post, the company stated that if users violated this rule multiple times, their account could be permanently banned. The platforms specifically mentioned in this rule were Facebook, Instagram, Mastodon, Truth Social, Tribel, Post, and Nostr. While the official support page and tweets on this development have been deleted, cached versions of the webpage are still available and there are screenshots of the tweets online. Interestingly, tweets by Twitter owner Elon Musk on this new rule still exist. Musk has said that users can cross-post without intentionally promoting the other platform(s).
The official blog post also stated that Twitter would stop users from posting shortened links from third-party aggregators such as linktr.ee, lnk.bio. It appears users can continue sharing links to YouTube and TikTok, Telegram and WhatsApp channels, and news articles.
The now-deleted post read:
“Accounts that are used for the main purpose of promoting content on another social platform may be suspended. Additionally, any attempts to bypass restrictions on external links to the above prohibited social media platforms through technical or non-technical means (e.g. URL cloaking, plaintext obfuscation) is in violation of this policy. This includes, but is not limited to, spelling out “dot” for social media platforms that use “.” in the names to avoid URL creation, or sharing screenshots of your handle on a prohibited social media platform. Example: “Instagram dot com/username.”
Musk, in a contrary tweet, said that users are “casually” allowed to tweet links, but “no more relentless advertising of competitors for free, which is absurd in the extreme.” On the other hand, former Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey says that the new update “doesn’t make sense.” Dorsey was mainly referring to the ban on links to Nostr, where he recently donated $245,000 for development.
The new update follows the arbitrary suspension of several journalists (now restored) allegedly for doxxing. Twitter is revamping rules to protect users’ privacy, after an account was found tracking Elon Musk’s private jet movements. Over the weekend, Twitter also stopped the promotion of its Indian rival Koo on the platform.