In a statement, the social media giant said accounts, including @POTUS, @WhiteHouse, @VP, and @FLOTUS, will “not automatically retain their existing followers,” despite Trump absorbing Barack Obama’s followers back in 2017.
Biden’s digital director Rob Flaherty said the incoming president’s team “pushed back” on Twitter’s decision but were told it was “unequivocal.” He added: “Just to be clear: this is Twitter’s decision, not Trump’s.”
A Twitter spokesman said: “As we did in 2017, Twitter is actively working with the US government to support the transition of Twitter accounts across administrations, so that the incoming Biden administration will have access to institutional White House Twitter accounts.
“The accounts will not automatically retain their existing followers. Instead, Twitter will notify followers of these accounts to provide context that the content will be archived and allow them the choice to follow the Biden administration’s new accounts.”
The changes will take place on inauguration day on January 20. Other accounts impacted will include @PressSec, @Cabinet, and @LaCasaBlanca.
Twitter has been a powerful too for Trump during his tenure, though he has used his personal @realDonaldTrump account to wield influence, rather than the official White House mouthpieces. Having said that, @POTUS — which has 33M followers — does retweet many of Trump’s personal posts.
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