Twitter on Thursday suspended the accounts of several journalists who covered the social network and its new owner Elon Musk.

Some of the reporters had tweeted about Twitter's decision on Wednesday to suspend the account that automatically reported Elon Musk's private jet rides.

Among the suspended journalists are employees of media such as CNN, the New York Times, or the Washington Post, others being independent journalists.

A social network competitor Mastodon's Twitter account has also been suspended, according to NBC News.

Statement on tonight's suspension of CNN's @donie O'Sullivan:

— CNN Communications (@CNNPR) December 16, 2022

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“The impulsive and unjustified suspension of a number of reporters like that of (journalist) CNN Donie O'Sullivan is worrying but not surprising,” the American channel responded in a statement.

“Twitter's growing instability and volatility is of particular concern to anyone using the platform.

We have asked Twitter for an explanation, and we will reassess our relationship based on that response.

Public data

Elon Musk tweeted on Wednesday that a car in Los Angeles with his child in it had been tracked by "a crazy stalker", and appeared to point to the tracking of his private jet as the reason.

He announced in this tweet that he was going to sue the person behind the now suspended @ElonJet account.

Created by a student and followed by around 500,000 people, @ElonJet used public data to automatically indicate when and where the Spacex and Tesla boss's device took off and landed.

Twitter subsequently communicated to announce that its policy now prohibited most tweets that showed someone's location in real time.

Conflicting decisions

"Posting someone's location in real time violates doxing regulations, but posting it offline is allowed," Elon Musk tweeted on Wednesday.

The term "doxing" means disclosing, on the Internet most often, personal information relating to an individual, without their consent.

When he arrived at the head of Twitter, Elon Musk had promised not to touch the @ElonJet account.

Since taking over the platform for $44 billion, the billionaire has sent mixed messages about what is and is not allowed on it.

Fervent defender of a great freedom of expression – as long as the remarks respect the law – he restored accounts previously banned by the social network, including that of Donald Trump.

But he also suspended that of Kanye West after the publication of several messages deemed anti-Semitic and refused the return to the platform of the far-right conspirator, Alex Jones.

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