Philly reporter Danielle Corcione (who uses they/them pronouns) got their Twitter account suspended for 12 days over what they call a joke that sought to keep “trans exclusionary radical feminists” or “TERFs” out of a prior meme-inspired tweet they posted.
“I can see how it could be perceived as a threat but it was a joke,” Corcione told Technical.ly. “I saw cis people tweeting it and I needed to make it absolutely clear that this is a meme that was meant for queer people to share.”
After national outlets like Jezebel and DailyDot posted stories about the suspension, the San Francisco company reversed its decision, despite having previously dispelled Corcione’s appeal on the decision.
“It was a big chunk of time and I’m really disappointed that it took so long and that it took press and me going viral for people to do something about it,” Corcione said.
Last week, as Corcione reported on the #OccupyIcePHL protest and the police raid, they could not track updates on the story through the platform, which organizers have been using to make official statements. But beyond the challenges to their reporting duties, Corcione is most concerned about what their suspension says about the state of social media and online discourse.
“This happens to so many people who aren’t reporters, to trans and non-trans people for making jokes or non-direct threats,” Corcione said. “Twitter protects supremacists and that’s a huge problem not just for Twitter but for social media as a whole. Twitter is a public space that mimics the social inequalities that have existed offline and this shows you that Jack [Dorsey, Twitter CEO] and really all of Silicon Valley has a lot of control over what we can and cannot say.”-30-
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