Twitter removes image tweet by Trump over NYT copyright complaint


Twitter has continued its crackdown on Donald Trump’s account by removing a meme tweeted by the president after the New York Times filed a copyright complaint about the use of the photo.

Trump posted an image of himself on Tuesday that was taken by NYT photographer Damon Winter for a feature on the then-presidential candidate in 2015.

The black and white picture showed a smirking Trump sitting down while pointing at the camera, but was turned into a meme with bold white text saying: “In reality, they’re not after me they’re after you. I’m just in the way.”

On Wednesday the photo had disappeared from the president’s account and the tweet instead showed a ‘media not displayed’ notice.

“This image has been removed in response to a report from the copyright holder,” it said.

Twitter confirmed that the meme had been removed for violating its copyright policy, Axios reported.

“Per our copyright policy, we respond to valid copyright complaints sent to us by a copyright owner or their authorized representatives,” the company said.

The complaint lodged on the Lumen Database showed the New York Times filed a ‘takedown notice’ on Wednesday under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act.

The move marks the second time in two weeks that Twitter has cracked down on Trump’s account, having previously flagged a video tweeted by the president as “manipulated media.”

The clip, posted on 18 June, had been edited to look like a package from CNN and showed a black boy running in the opposite direction from the white boy with a fake CNN strap that read: “Breaking news. A terrified toddler runs from a racist baby. The racist baby probably a Trump voter.”

“This image has been removed in response to a report from the copyright holder.”

The shot cuts away to a black screen with the message ‘what actually happened’. It then shows the two boys running towards each other in the street to hug.

CNN reacted angrily to the president’s tweet and said the president was ‘tweeting fake videos that exploit innocent children’.

A Twitter spokesperson told CNN: “This Tweet has been labeled per our synthetic and manipulated media policy to give people more context.”

It comes after Twitter in May began placing fact-check warnings on two tweets from Trump’s own account that called mail-in ballots ‘fraudulent’ and predicted problems with the November elections.

Under the tweets, there is now a link reading ‘Get the facts about mail-in ballots’ that guides users to a Twitter ‘moments’ page with fact checks and news stories about Trump’s unsubstantiated claims.

It also demoted and placed a stronger warning on a third Trump tweet about Minneapolis protests last month that read, in part, that “when the looting starts, the shooting starts.”

Twitter said that the tweet had violated the platform’s rules by glorifying violence.

Trump has long railed about perceived liberal bias among social media companies.

On 28 May Trump signed an executive order seeking to scrap legal protections for social media firms, which he has accused of political bias.

The order could open Twitter, Facebook, and Google up to lawsuits by diluting the legal protection which stops them from being liable for posts on their platforms, and which also allows them to moderate content.


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