Elon Musk reinstates X account belonging to Alex Jones

Alex Jones, an alt-right radio host, was banned by the social media platform in 2018 for violating behavior policies. Musk's move to restore Jones' account could spark further concern from advertisers

Jones attended the "Save America Rally" on January 6, 2021 prior to the storming of the US Capitol. (photo: DW)
Jones attended the "Save America Rally" on January 6, 2021 prior to the storming of the US Capitol. (photo: DW)


Elon Musk on Sunday, 10 December reinstated the X account belonging to conspiracy theorist Alex Jones, after a poll was taken on the social media platform.

Nearly 2 million votes were cast in the poll, with about 70% of participants backing Jones' return.

Musk: 'The people have spoken'

"The people have spoken and so it shall be," Musk said after the poll closed.

Since being reinstated, Jones has reposted a message on his account from controversial influencer Andrew Tate, who faces human trafficking charges in Romania.

In September 2018, Jones was banned from X, formerly known as Twitter. The platform restricted the accounts of Jones and his alt-right Infowars radio show for violating its behavior policies.

Jones, a staunch supporter of former US President Donald Trump, has falsely claimed that the 2012 shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut, was staged in order to restrict gun ownership. The shooting, carried out by a 20-year-old gunman, killed 26 people, most of them children.

Jones' accusations that the parents of Sandy Hook victims were "crisis actors" have led to two lawsuits against him in Connecticut and Texas. Relatives of the victims have sued Jones, with the conspiracy theorist being ordered to pay nearly $1.5 billion (€1.39 billion) in damages.

Could X lose further advertisers?

Musk, a so-called free speech absolutist, bought the social media platform, then Twitter, last year for $44 billion.

The billionaire, who is also the CEO of Tesla and founder of rocket company SpaceX, had earlier declined to restore Jones' account. The decision to bring Jones back could spark concern among companies which advertise on X.

A report by progressive watchdog group Media Matters for America last month revealed that advertisements on X were being shown alongside pro-Nazi content. Major companies such as Apple and IBM have since stopped running ads on X.

Musk also backed an antisemitic conspiracy theory on X, sparking further controversy. He has apologized for his actions and also recently visited Israel to show solidarity.

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Published: 11 Dec 2023, 12:16 PM