Micro-blogging platform X, formerly known as Twitter, on Sunday reinstated the account of US right-wing conspiracy theorist Alex Jones following a poll result organized by X owner Elon Musk that backed his return after a ban of nearly five years, reported Reuters.
Close to 2 million votes were cast by the time the poll closed, with about 70% voting in favor of Jones' reinstatement. "The people have spoken and so it shall be," Musk wrote in the reply to the poll that ended on Sunday.
Under Musk, who acquired the social media site in 2022, X has moved to reinstate the accounts of some users who had been permanently banned, including former US President Donald Trump.
Accumulated 1 million followers
Soon after reappearing on the platform, Jones' account began accumulating followers and currently has about 1 million and soon he interviewed Elon Musk for two hours.
Jones' account with username "@RealAlexJones" now shows his last original post was on Sept. 6, 2018, the same day the social media platform's previous owners permanently banned his account and website Infowars, saying they had violated its behavior policies.
The ban came weeks after Apple, YouTube and Facebook took down podcasts and channels from Jones, citing community standards.
Jones last year was ordered to pay nearly $1.5 billion in damages to relatives of victims in the Sandy Hook school shooting for falsely claiming they were actors who staged the tragedy as part of a government plot to seize Americans' guns.
Right after Musk's takeover of Twitter, the social media platform introduced modifications, including changing its name and revisiting its policies. It also reinstated previously suspended accounts of many, including that of former US President Donald Trump.
The billionaire has since sought to reassure users and advertisers that such a decision would be made with the consideration of a content moderation council composed of people with "widely diverse viewpoints" and no account reinstatements would happen before the council convened.
Several companies including Comcastand Walt Disney paused their advertisements on X after Musk agreed with a post that falsely claimed that Jewish people were stoking hatred against white people.
(With inputs from agencies)