Complaining about Morning Joe host Joe Scarborough in a weird Twitter rant wasn’t the only viral (or Twitter adjacent) thing that Donald Trump did today. The President of the United States and his staff also hosted none other than Twitter’s co-founder and CEO Jack Dorsey, whose comments (or lack thereof) regarding his platform’s efforts to curb various forms of extremism — especially during election season. Yes, that’s right… Trump met with Jack in the Oval Office today. So how’d it go?
Depends on who you ask. According to Trump, who tweeted an image from the meeting this evening, it was a “great meeting… regarding [Twitter’s] platform, and the world of social media in general.”
Great meeting this afternoon at the @WhiteHouse with @Jack from @Twitter. Lots of subjects discussed regarding their platform, and the world of social media in general. Look forward to keeping an open dialogue! pic.twitter.com/QnZi579eFb
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) April 23, 2019
In a tweeted statement responding to Trump, Dorsey thanked the president for his time. “Twitter is here to serve the entire public conversation, and we intend to make it healthier and more civil. Thanks for the discussion about that,” he wrote.
Thank you for the time. Twitter is here to serve the entire public conversation, and we intend to make it healthier and more civil. Thanks for the discussion about that.
— jack (@jack) April 23, 2019
Meanwhile, the Washington Post reported that Trump and Dorsey’s meeting wasn’t quite as cordial as their public exchange suggests. Apparently, and unsurprisingly, a “significant portion of the meeting focused on Trump’s concerns that Twitter quietly, and deliberately, has limited or removed some of his followers.” The Post‘s anonymous source also revealed that Trump “said he had heard from fellow conservatives who had lost followers for unclear reasons as well.”
Twitter and other social media platforms have long maintained that these practices do not exist, instead arguing that fluctuating follower counts have more to do with ever-changing measures to reduce spam accounts. Even so, it shouldn’t be too surprising that Trump complained about this directly to Jack — after all, it’s something that prominent conservative or extremist figures have done before.
And just as predictable as Trump’s complaints were, so too was Twitter’s reaction to his meeting with Jack.
Imagine if you will, Lincoln summoning @jack to talk about his follower count and his conviction that his son is being “shadow banned”
— Molly Jong-Fast (@MollyJongFast) April 23, 2019
“Four score and seven years ago, I had 23,000 more bot followers than I do today.”
— Aaron Rupar (@atrupar) April 23, 2019
— Philip Bump (@pbump) April 23, 2019
beyond pathetic but I'm glad Dorsey had this happen to him https://t.co/6owVrEqb66
— Owen Ellickson (@onlxn) April 23, 2019
It is good that Jack had to listen to Trump complain about his follower count and other soft-skulled MAGA junk, but I imagine that basically every world leader Trump talks to hears the same shit. Trump has definitely talked to Macron about Diamond & Silk.
— David Roth (@david_j_roth) April 23, 2019
Jack: You wanted to meet with me, Mr. President…
Trump: Yes, how can I tweet as Tig?
— Alex Scordelis (@alexscordelis) April 23, 2019
Trump: What is a pawg? Am *I* a pawg?
Jack: … Yes, Mr President
— pixelatedboat aka “mr tweets” (@pixelatedboat) April 23, 2019
"this is the electoral map i won"
"yes sir" pic.twitter.com/eHoCS2xsfB
— darth (@darth) April 23, 2019
(Via Washington Post)