End Twitter’s Apparent Double Standard on Death Wish Tweets

Target: Jack Dorsey, CEO of Twitter

Goal: Protect all public figures by ending the apparent double standard on death wish tweets.

When Donald Trump contracted COVID-19, Twitter announced that it would be policing those who use the platform to wish death on the president. However, in previous instances, the platform seemingly did nothing to police death wishes on users who identify as women or minorities.

Twitter’s apparently abusive behavior policy prohibits the use of the social media platform to “wish or hope serious harm on a person or a group of people.” While many prominent people tweeted messages to wish President Trump well after his diagnosis—including his opponent, Joe Biden—many users who rejoiced in Trump’s precarious health situation were policed as violating Twitter’s terms of use. The company said in a tweet that “Tweets that wish or hope for death, serious bodily harm or fatal disease against *anyone* are not allowed and will be removed” adding that these tweets would not “automatically mean suspension” of the account linked to the tweet.

Filmmaker Ava DuVernay said: “Does this also go for black and Brown women who have long been and continue to be harassed and threatened with assault and death on this platform or nah? I think no. Because I see those same accounts still up. Still causing harm. Your *anyone* is disingenuous.” Other women and people of color spoke out as well, including Malorie Blackman, former children’s laureate. Blackman claimed: “Weeks of death threats and serious threats against my family when I was children’s laureate [from 2013 to 2015] resulted in Twitter doing bugger all about it.” Representative Ilhan Omar, who has received many death threats and threats to her safety on the platform, retweeted a statement from Representative Mark Pocan responding to the news that Twitter would be removing death treats against Trump: “Good! Now if they could also remove death threats to some of my colleagues like @IlhanMN, the platform would be a better place.”

Sign this petition to urge Twitter to be fair in the execution of their policies and to end the apparent double standard on death wish tweets.


Dear Mr. Dorsey,

Twitter’s policies should be in place to impartially protect all users, regardless of their background, gender, or ethnicity. Recently, Twitter directly responded to tweets that negatively addressed the president’s health after he contracted COVID-19, saying that tweets that wish or hope for death or serious bodily harm are not allowed.

However, in the past, Twitter has seemingly not taken big steps to protect other users from similar sentiments, ill will, and death threats. Notably, women of color have been reportedly left to fend for themselves, unprotected by Twitter’s user agreement. I urge you to unbiasedly stand with your user agreement and to end the apparent double standard on death wish tweets.


[Your Name Here]

Photo Credit: LoboStudioHamburg



  1. The only reason Jack Dorsey, like many other social media CEO’s do and he did in regards to the president, is because it was the president and he wanted to make Twitter look good. These social media sites are the platform for the promotion of violence, drug related and vulgar content. These social media sites are where today kids, teenagers and narrow minded adults are exposed to the ungodly evil of other sick minded human trash. These social media platforms get away with it because of the influence they have over many, backed by billions upon billions of dollars, which is their shield from the law and their only ethical concern.

  2. Lisa Finnigan says:

    How about banning all tweets that encourage animal abuse!

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