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Giuliani Lashes Out at Twitter Over Trump Prank

Newsweek logo Newsweek 12/5/2018 Shane Croucher

Rudy Giuliani wearing a suit and tie talking on a cell phone: After Rudy Giuliani accidentally tweeted a hyperlink — and a prankster took advantage of it — the president’s lawyer accused Twitter of letting someone “invade my text.” © Doug Mills/The New York Times After Rudy Giuliani accidentally tweeted a hyperlink — and a prankster took advantage of it — the president’s lawyer accused Twitter of letting someone “invade my text.” Rudy Giuliani became the latest conservative to lash out at Twitter, accusing it of allowing someone to “invade my text” after he fell victim to a prank unrelated to the social media company.

Giuliani, who is one of President Donald Trump’s lawyers battling the Mueller investigation, accidentally tweeted the random hyperlink “G-20.in” by not putting a space after a period.

Because of how Twitter works, hyperlinks are automatically created when valid domains are written out in tweets. For example, writing out Twitter.com in a tweet would create a link to Twitter’s homepage.

On Friday, Giuliani tweeted: "Mueller filed an indictment just as the President left for G-20.In  July he indicted the Russians who will never come here just before he left for Helsinki.Either could have been done earlier or later. Out of control!Supervision please?"

Someone then bought the G-20.in domain in Giuliani’s tweet and put up the message “Donald J. Trump is a traitor to our country” so anybody who clicked on the link saw it.

Upon learning about the prank, Giuliani — who is also Trump’s cybersecurity adviser — lashed out at Twitter for his own error.

Giuliani wrote on Tuesday afternoon: “Twitter allowed someone to invade my text with a disgusting anti-President message. The same thing-period no space-occurred later and it didn’t happen. Don’t tell me they are not committed cardcarrying anti-Trumpers. Time Magazine also may fit that description. FAIRNESS PLEASE.”

Twitter did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

It is not the first time that conservatives have accused Twitter of acting against them.

President Donald Trump took aim at Twitter himself in July when he complained about alleged “shadow banning” by the platform of Republicans.

“Twitter 'SHADOW BANNING' prominent Republicans. Not good. We will look into this discriminatory and illegal practice at once! Many complaints,” Trump tweeted.

Many on the right claim they are subject to shadow banning on social media sites. Shadow banning is the covert blocking of users and their content on social media sites by preventing their appearance in searches, without informing them such action has been taken.

Twitter categorically denies shadow banning any users and said issues around the disappearance of some users from the auto-suggestions element of its search tool was just a technical problem that is now resolved.

However, Twitter has taken action in tandem with other prominent media platforms in outright banning some of the most prominent purveyors of hate, conspiracy theories, and fake news, including Milo Yiannopoulos and Infowars founder Alex Jones.


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