Trump is attacking a Twitter employee over the company's decision to fact-check him because the employee criticised Trump in past tweets

REUTERS/Mike Segar
  • President Donald Trump slammed a Twitter employee as a “hater” Thursday after the employee’s old tweets surfaced that were critical of Trump.
  • Twitter’s head of site integrity, Yoel Roth, tweeted that Trump was a “racist tangerine” and decried “ACTUAL NAZIS IN THE WHITE HOUSE” in 2016 and 2017. Trump allies widely circulated the tweets Wednesday, purportedly as evidence of Twitter’s anti-conservative bias.
  • Roth is now at the centre of Trump’s ire over Twitter’s decision to add fact-checking labels to some of his tweets that contain false statements.
  • “Fact check: there is someone ultimately accountable for our actions as a company, and that’s me,” Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey tweeted on Wednesday night. “Please leave our employees out of this.”
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President Donald Trump slammed a Twitter employee Thursday who was critical of Trump in past tweets, calling the employee a “hater” and tagging his twitter handle.

Trump has reacted strongly this week to Twitter’s decision to add fact-checking labels to some of his tweets for the first time, and has accused Twitter and other tech companies, again and without evidence, of anti-conservative bias.

On Wednesday, Trump allies and advisers started directing their ire at Twitter’s head of site integrity, Yoel Roth, who has tweeted harsh criticism of Trump in the past.

Roth’s old tweets from 2016 and 2017 were resurfaced and shared widely on Wednesday, including a tweet calling Trump a “racist tangerine,” a tweet decrying “ACTUAL NAZIS IN THE WHITE HOUSE,” and a tweet describing Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell as “a personality-free bag of farts.”

A Twitter spokesperson told Business Insider Wednesday that Roth is part of the team overseen by VP for trust and safety Del Harvey that recommends whether to label tweets that contain misinformation, but added that the decision to label tweets is ultimately made by “leadership” following recommendations from the trust and safety team.

On Wednesday night, Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey stood by the decision to correct Trump’s false claims about voting.

“Fact check: there is someone ultimately accountable for our actions as a company, and that’s me,” Dorsey posted. “Please leave our employees out of this. We’ll continue to point out incorrect or disputed information about elections globally.”

“Per our Civic Integrity policy (https://help.twitter.com/en/rules-and-policies/election-integrity-policy), the tweets yesterday may mislead people into thinking they don’t need to register to get a ballot (only registered voters receive ballots),” Dorsey continued. “We’re updating the link on @realDonaldTrump’s tweet to make this more clear.”

Trump advisers are presenting Roth’s tweets as evidence of alleged anti-conservative bias across Twitter and other tech companies. Donald Trump Jr. slammed Roth on Twitter after Breitbart reported on his past tweets. On Fox News Wednesday morning, senior adviser Kellyanne Conway called Roth “horrible” and read his Twitter handle out loud on air.

“Somebody in San Francisco go wake him up and tell him he’s about to get a lot more followers,” Conway said on “Fox & Friends” on Wednesday.

The jabs at Roth are part of the Trump world’s broader backlash to Twitter’s decision to add fact-checking labels to Trump’s tweets that claimed without evidence that vote by mail is being used by Democrats to commit voter fraud. The tweets now include a disclaimer reading “get the facts” with a link to independent fact-checkers who debunk Trump’s claim.

This is the first time Twitter has taken action to mediate Trump’s false or misleading statements on the platform. Twitter has been upbraided by Trump critics over the years who say the platform enables Trump to spread falsehoods despite its policies against misinformation.

Trump lashed out at Twitter in response to the labels early Wednesday, threatening to shut down or “strongly regulate” social-media platforms that he claims are unfair to conservatives.

Charles Davis contributed to this report.

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