Twitter Suspends, Reinstates, Then Rebans Account Tracking Elon Musk’s Jet

Terminally-online denizens of Twitter might want to start tracking @elonjet the way the account itself tracks the private aircraft belonging to Elon Musk, as its status shifted several times over the course of a few heady hours on Wednesday. As of 8:30 p.m. EST, the account was suspended—but only after it was reinstated for roughly an hour, in a reversal from an initial ban that was enacted earlier in the day.

“So this morning, I am pretty surprised,” Jack Sweeney, the 20-year-old college student who runs @elonjet, previously told The Daily Beast on Wednesday.

The ultimate mystery, of course, remains exactly how much real estate the account is taking up in Musk’s head, with the billionaire having said weeks ago that his “commitment to free speech extends even to not banning the account following my plane, even though that is a direct personal safety risk.” (The account uses publicly available information.)

Despite Sweeney telling The Associated Press that he’d woken up on Wednesday to a notice that his bot account had been permanently suspended for breaking Twitter’s rules without further explanation, @elonjet reappeared on its more than 526,000 followers’ feeds at 6:14 p.m. that evening.

Sweeney then seemingly fired off a couple of tweets, writing, “Wait Hello? How long does delay mean @elonmusk,” in an apparent reference to a policy change on live location-sharing that the Twitter Safety team was already in the midst of publicly announcing.

Musk himself elaborated shortly after, tweeting, “Any account doxxing real-time location info of anyone will be suspended, as it is a physical safety violation. This includes posting links to sites with real-time location info.”

He added: “Posting locations someone traveled to on a slightly delayed basis isn’t a safety problem, so is ok.”

An archival snapshot of the company’s newly updated “Private information and media policy” taken by The Intercept reflected that this new rule was not present on Tuesday.

The @elonjet account managed to put out a handful of other tweets, including one asking for the reinstatement of Sweeney’s personal account, @JxckSweeney, which was also hit with a Wednesday morning ban. At 6:46 p.m., it tweeted, “Yes I am back! But just In case make sure to follow my other accounts,” and went silent. Its page later reflected a suspended account.

Musk also suggested on Wednesday night that he was preparing to sue Sweeney, alleging in a tweet underneath the post announcing the anti-“doxxing” change that a “crazy stalker” climbed onto the hood of a vehicle carrying his son, X Æ A-12, in Los Angeles “thinking it was me.”

“Legal action is being taken against Sweeney & organizations who supported harm to my family,” Musk wrote.

Sweeney’s personal account, @JxckSweeney, also remained suspended as of 8:30 p.m. EST on Wednesday.

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