WASHINGTON – Kanye West’s Twitter and Instagram accounts were restricted over the weekend, with the social media platforms claiming to have removed posts by the rapper that were deemed anti-Semitic by online users.
West, who legally changed his name to “Ye” last year, was locked out of Instagram on Friday by Facebook parent Meta Platforms Inc (META.O). He then switched to Twitter, where he posted for the first time in two years on Saturday.
West’s first tweet since 2020 was a hazy photo of him singing karaoke with Meta Platforms founder Mark Zuckerberg. According to the tweet: “Take a look at this, Mark. How did you get rid of me on Instagram?”
West then tweeted: “You guys have toyed with me and tried to blackball anyone whoever opposes your agenda.” That post, in which he said he was not anti-Semitic, was removed by Twitter. His account was also locked, a Twitter spokesperson confirmed on Sunday.
West then tweeted the following tweet which was then removed by Twitter Inc:
The step by Twitter Inc (TWTR.N) to lock the performer’s account was noteworthy because billionaire Elon Musk, who has said he would buy Twitter and calls himself a free speech absolutist, had welcomed West’s return to the platform and replied to a post by the rapper tweeting: “Welcome back to Twitter, my friend!”
On Monday evening Musk said on Twitter that he had talked to West and “expressed my concerns about his recent tweet, which I think he took to heart.”
West has previously made erratic online posts. Earlier this year, he was suspended from Instagram for 24 hours after he directed racial slurs at comedian Trevor Noah.
Before he took to Twitter early on Saturday, the rapper had his Instagram account suspended after a since-removed post in which he invoked anti-Semitic tropes, accusing a musician of being controlled by “the Jewish people.”
The company said on Saturday temporary restrictions on posting, commenting and messaging were imposed on West’s Instagram account.
The suspension comes days after German sporting goods maker Adidas (ADSGn.DE) said it had put under review its business partnership with West.
CNBC, which first reported the news, said West had been publicly critical of Adidas and its CEO and told the broadcaster that the German group was copying his ideas. Adidas has been partnering with West since 2013, CNBC said. – Reuters
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