Donald Trump hosted Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey and several other Twitter executives in the Oval Office on Tuesday. After the meeting, the president tweeted a riveting summary, “Lots of subjects discussed regarding their platform, and the world of social media in general.” Twitter was more specific, saying in a statement, “They discussed Twitter’s commitment to protecting the health of the public conversation ahead of the 2020 U.S. elections and efforts underway to respond to the opioid crisis.”
Washington Post reports a different story:
A significant portion of the meeting focused on Trump’s concerns that Twitter quietly, and deliberately, had removed some of his followers, according to a person with direct knowledge of the conversation who requested anonymity because it was private. Trump said he had heard from fellow conservatives who had lost followers as well.
But Twitter long has explained that follower figures fluctuate as the company takes action to remove fraudulent spam accounts. In the meeting, Dorsey stressed that point, noting even he had lost followers as part of Twitter’s work to enforce its policies, according to the source.
That’s the head of a $30 billion company, summoned to the White House to comfort our curvy president that there is not a corporate conspiracy to decrease his social media stats. Trump, in fact, suggested as much earlier in the day, tweeting: “over 100 M … But should be much higher than that if Twitter wasn’t playing their political games. No wonder Congress wants to get involved – and they should.”
The public conversation’s health is strong indeed.