Accounts have been reinstated...for now.

Excuse Goose

Days after X-formerly-Twitter banned several left-leaning accounts on the social media platform with no good reason or warning, owner and head honcho Elon Musk tried to explain away the fiasco with a flimsy excuse.

"We do sweeps for spam/scam accounts and sometimes real accounts get caught up in them," he posted on X after probing questions from other users.

Sharp-elbowed X users in the replies weren't buying it, especially since the platform is still lousy with bots of all stripes.

"Are you stoned right now?" journalist Keith Olbermann quipped.

One user summed it succinctly with a particularly trenchant comment.

"Sorry Elon, that’s a poor excuse," they wrote. "My gut tells me this was a human action. Perhaps there is a need to audit X staff and processes."

Free Speech

Accounts that were put in temporary online purgatory included Texas Observer journalist Steven Monacelli, The Intercept's Ken Klippenstein, podcaster Rob Rousseau and leftist podcaster TrueAnon.

As of Wednesday, many of the accounts were back, and they were not taking Musk's excuse lying down.

"That strikes me as highly implausible, if not impossible," Monacelli told NBC News. "If it is possible, it is a reflection of how terrible the state of engineering has become on this platform."

All of the accounts have commonalities in that they are left-leaning and are often critical of Musk in their comments and reporting.

Klippenstein posted on X that that last item he reported on regarding Musk was a meeting between him and Israel Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on "the security aspects of artificial intelligence."

With all that context, Musk's excuse basically just stinks.

This episode also highlights once again Musk's hypocritical approach towards free speech. The platform has banned other accounts of journalists since his takeover, while letting disinformation and hate speech proliferate.

With this most recent ban hammer kerfuffle and the general mismanagement of the site, possibly due to being overextended with his other companies or alleged drug use, Musk seems committed to driving away even more users and advertisers. The platform has apparently lost tons of ad revenue since his takeover, along with users.

Where's the bottom to all of this? We don't know when this downward spiral will end — and it feels like even Musk may not know either.

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