Ye trolls on return from antisemitism ban, tweeting: Shalom

In new, free-for-all version of Twitter, Kanye West is back and Musk trolls the ADL

Recent developments signal a no-bigots-barred future for the platform; Trump’s account reinstated but former president blasé about rejoining

In this file photo taken on March 14, 2019, Tesla CEO Elon Musk speaks during the unveiling of the new Tesla Model Y in Hawthorne, California. (Frederic J. Brown/AFP)
In this file photo taken on March 14, 2019, Tesla CEO Elon Musk speaks during the unveiling of the new Tesla Model Y in Hawthorne, California. (Frederic J. Brown/AFP)

JTA — Elon Musk bantered with Kanye West and trolled the Anti-Defamation League this weekend, signaling the no-bigots-barred free-for-all he apparently hopes the platform will become.

The rapper and designer who also goes by Ye was banned last month from Twitter for threatening Jews, and then freed from Twitter jail on Nov. 4 for a day only get banned again the same day after he launched a new round of anti-Jewish invective.

“Testing Testing Seeing if my Twitter is unblocked,” West said midday Sunday. It’s not clear if Musk, who finalized his purchase of Twitter last month, okayed West’s return, but about five hours later he appeared to be welcoming West, punning on his more recent name.

“Don’t kill what ye hate Save what ye love,” Musk said in reply to West’s query. West’s next tweet was simply “Shalom” followed by a smile emoji.

The exchange came after Musk responded to criticism from ADL CEO Jonathan Greenblatt with a tweet saying “Hey stop defaming me!”

Musk on Friday restored to Twitter former President Donald Trump after an unscientific poll. Trump had been banned from the platform since Jan. 6, 2021, after his incendiary tweets helped spur the deadly riots seeking to keep Congress from certifying Joe Biden’s election as president. (Trump for his part was blasé about his restoration, saying he preferred Truth Social, the small social media platform he launched after being banned from Twitter.)

Trump’s restoration drew a rebuke on the platform from Greenblatt, who had led an effort by civil rights groups to engage with Musk after he purchased the platform to ensure he maintained strictures against incitement and harassment.

“For @elonmusk to allow Donald Trump back on Twitter, ostensibly after a brief poll, shows he is not remotely serious about safeguarding the platform from hate, harassment and misinformation.” That drew Musk’s jokey reply about Greenblatt “defaming” him.

Greenblatt’s engagement with Musk seemed to go well at first. Last month, Greenblatt praised the industrialist known for revivifying space travel and popularizing electric vehicles as a once-in-a-generation innovator. Musk then posted about a meeting with the ADL and other civil rights groups to discuss moderation for hate speech, antisemitism, and extremism and said: “Twitter will continue to combat hate and harassment and enforce its election integrity policies.”

But as Musk instituted changes, firing or encouraging hundreds of staffers to quit, including the executives responsible for ensuring that the platform is free of hate, hateful language and harassment spiked on the site.

The coalition Greenblatt initiated, Stop Hate For Profit, called on advertisers to quit Twitter until Musk makes changes.

But a review of Musk’s more recent tweets suggested he was enjoying the free-for-all.

He mocked his critics, saying they were driving eyes to Twitter, joked that he hoped Twitter would induce a greater dopamine rush and then posted what he framed as a statement of his philosophy: “The most entertaining outcome is the most likely.”

Times of Israel staff contributed to this report.

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