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Elon Musk suspends Washington Post’s Taylor Lorenz from Twitter

Elon Musk’s war on journalists marched on this weekend with Washington Post reporter Taylor Lorenz was temporarily booted from Twitter after she asked the erratic billionaire for comment on a story.

“When I went to log in to see if he had answered our question, I was suspended. I received zero communication from the company as to why I was suspended or what terms I violated,” Lorenz wrote on Substack.

Musk said Sunday morning that Lorenz was suspended for “past doxxing from this account” and that it would be lifted “shortly.”

But when Lorenz appealed her suspension, she got a response from Twitter saying her account was “permanently suspended”[ads1]; and that she shouldn’t bother responding because “this decision will not be overturned.”

A few hours later, Lorenz’s Twitter account was restored.

The suspension came just a couple of days after Musk suspended and then reinstated the accounts of several other prominent journalists who had referenced the account @elonjet, run by a schoolboy, which tracks the movements of his private jet.

It also followed a recent complaint to Musk from influencer manager Ariadna Jacob, who was the subject of a critical article by Lorenz and who subsequently sued the reporter for defamation.

Jacob claimed that Lorenz doxxed her in the article, which appeared in New York Times when she worked there. In Lorenz’s story, she linked to a public Zillow listing of an influencer co-op home.

“Such disgraceful behavior will not be tolerated going forward,” Musk wrote in response Friday, the day before Lorenz was suspended from Twitter.

The move was condemned by Washington Post managing editor Sally Buzbee, who noted that it was the second suspension of a Mail journalist after reporter Drew Harwell was suspended Thursday.

“The arbitrary suspension of another Post journalist further undermines Elon Musk’s claim that he intends to run Twitter as a platform dedicated to free speech,” Buzbee said in a statement. “Again, the suspension happened without warning, due process or explanation — this time when our reporter was simply seeking comment from Musk for a story. Post journalists should be reinstated immediately, without arbitrary conditions.”

The suspension of Lorenz without any clear explanation of her alleged transgression has been the subject of previous journalists’ bans.

For example, Twitter banned some reporters who only linked to @elonjet’s new account on social media rival Mastodon – which was also briefly banned from Twitter.

“Twitter has served as an important real-time news source and played a critical role in the world of journalism,” Lorenz wrote, “but Musk’s arbitrary suspensions of journalists who report on him should concern anyone who values ​​journalism and free speech.”

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