×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Twitter Bans Breitbart Editor In Response to Leslie Jones Harassment

In an unusually public response to harassment charges, Twitter permanently banned controversial columnist Milo Yiannopoulos from its platform Tuesday night. Yiannopoulos, who works for the conservative website Breitbart.com, had been charged with inciting a storm of racist tweets against “Ghostbusters” star Leslie Jones, which prompted the actress to announce her own departure from Twitter earlier this week.

“No one deserves to be subjected to targeted abuse online, and our rules prohibit inciting or engaging in the targeted abuse or harassment of others,” a Twitter spokesperson said via email. The statement didn’t mention Yiannopoulos by name, but said that Twitter had taken actions against a number of accounts, “ranging from warnings that also require the deletion of Tweets violating our policies to permanent suspension.” The ban of Yiannopoulos was first reported by Buzzfeed.

Yiannopoulos had long been credited with inciting mob-like behavior among his followers, and frequently picked on liberals, women and people of color. He became a champion of the so-called GamerGate movement, and was temporarily banned from Twitter before. At one point, he had tweeted that one of his victims “deserves to be harassed.”

Yiannopoulos responded to the now-permanent ban by calling it “cowardly” and predicting that this would harm Twitter. “Anyone who cares about free speech has been sent a clear message: you’re not welcome on Twitter,” he was quoted on Breitbart.com.

Victims of online harassment have long argued that Twitter hasn’t done enough to curb hateful speech and abuse. Tuesday’s response may indicate that the company is changing its tone on the issue. It was particularly notable because CEO Jack Dorsey himself intervened, at one point asking Jones with a tweet to contact him privately to discuss her concerns.

Popular on Variety

More Digital

  • Rakuten TV Launching Pan-European AVOD Service

    Rakuten TV Launching Pan-European AVOD Service

    The buzz at Mipcom this year is about advertising-supported as much as subscription VOD, and Rakuten TV made a major move into that space Tuesday with the announcement of a new AVOD service in the 40-plus countries it serves in Europe. Rakuten TV has been focused on transaction-based video-on-demand, offering customers big-ticket studio movies. It [...]

  • Radio-Com

    Entercom's Radio.com Launches DVR-Style Controls for Live Radio Shows (EXCLUSIVE)

    Radio broadcaster Entercom Communications is hoping to expand listenership of its live programming by bringing TiVo-like functionality to its Radio.com platform. Launching this week, Radio.com Rewind lets listeners pause, rewind and fast-forward live radio. It’s accessible via the online player or in the Radio.com app. Eventually, the company said it will integrate the feature with [...]

  • Help Wanted: Amazon Studios International Execs

    Help Wanted: Amazon Studios International Execs Talk European Expansion

    If there’s a perfect example of Amazon Studios’ strategy with its local-language international TV content, Japan’s “Documental” would be it. The series revolves around 10 comedians who battle to make one another laugh in an elimination-style competition. James Farrell, Amazon Studios’ head of international originals, said it was a good example of an unconventional idea [...]

  • Discovery, ProSiebenSat.1 Streamer Joyn Will Launch

    Discovery and ProSiebenSat.1's Joint Streamer, Joyn, Will Get International Launch

    Joyn, the streaming service run jointly by Discovery and German media giant ProSiebenSat.1, will roll out internationally in addition to launching a premium tier domestically later this year. At Mipcom in Cannes, ProSiebenSat.1 CEO Max Conze was asked whether the service, which offers on-demand content and linear channel feeds, would launch beyond Germany. “We definitely [...]

  • The Outpost -- "One is the

    Electric Entertainment Launching OTT Channel Electric Now (EXCLUSIVE)

    U.S.-based producer and distributor Electric Entertainment is launching Electric Now, a linear OTT channel that will feature its top series and library content. The channel will have episodes of “The Outpost,” the fantasy-adventure series that has just had its third season greenlit by U.S. network The CW. The new season will head into production in [...]

  • AMC theater

    AMC Entertainment Introducing On-Demand Movie Service

    AMC Entertainment will introduce an online video store in the United States on Tuesday. Adam Aron, AMC’s president and chief executive, said that the AMC Theatres On Demand will offer about 2,000 films for sale or rent after their theatrical runs — much like Amazon or iTunes. Disney, Warner Bros., Universal, Sony and Paramount have [...]

  • Facebook Logo

    Facebook Watch Signs Content Pact With France's M6, Unveils European Short-Form Slate

    Facebook Watch has inked a content pact with French channel M6 and unveiled a slate of short-form content from European digital publishers for the platform. The deal with M6 will see the French broadcaster place spinoff programming from some of its hit shows on Facebook Watch. M6 will run pre- and after-show clips, interviews, and [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content