Conservative Twitter users rage after 30 million add Threads app on Day One (2024)

The successful launch of Meta's "Twitter killer" app Threads is not sitting well with some conservative Twitter users who have pledged their allegiance to self-proclaimed "free speech absolutist" Elon Musk.

Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg said on Thursday morning that a staggering 30 million users had already signed up for Threads, less than 24 hours after it was launched. While it was not clear how many users intended to stop using Twitter in favor of Threads, some vowed to never return to the platform that Musk bought last year.

Twitter has recently been on the defensive after experiencing an avalanche of criticism since Musk's takeover. The chaos increased last week, when the platform announced that users would be limited in the number of tweets viewed, particularly for accounts that are not paying for Musk's paid blue check "verification" subscription service.

Almost immediately after Threads started, conservatives loyal to Musk began to complain that they were being "censored" on the rival app, which is linked to Meta's Instagram and adheres to the same moderation policies. Zuckerberg has dubbed it a "friendly public space for conversation."

Conservative Twitter users rage after 30 million add Threads app on Day One (1)

"Just downloaded and signed up for the new Meta app 'Threads' meant to imitate Twitter," user @DC_Draino, a self-described "anti-woke" lawyer, tweeted just after the Threads app was released. "I posted once about wanting to expose Biden's corrupt government and they've already flagged me for censorship Great platform Zuck"

Just downloaded and signed up for the new Meta app “Threads” meant to imitate Twitter

I posted once about wanting to expose Biden’s corrupt government and they’ve already flagged me for censorship

Great platform Zuck pic.twitter.com/2RhusHRo7v

— DC_Draino (@DC_Draino) July 6, 2023

Multiple posts denouncing President Joe Biden and his son Hunter Biden remained online on @DC_Draino's Threads page at the time of publication, alongside other posts complaining of censorship.

Former President Donald Trump's social media platform, Truth Social, cited the supposed censorship of @DC_Draino as evidence that Threads is "Big Tech censorship tool" in an email obtained by Newsweek.

"In true Big Tech fashion, Threads began censoring conservatives within a few hours of launching," the email reads. "Threads already looks like just another Big Tech censorship tool. But rest assured, Truth Social will always be a haven for free speech."

"Conservatives need a unified response to 'Threads' and the well-funded effort to extinguish free speech in America," tweeted former Trump adviser Stephen Miller.

"Imagine leaving Twitter, the most free speech platform on the internet—owned and operated by one of the greatest free speech advocates of our time—to move to Threads, an app that is already engaging in the Censorship of Conservatives on day one," conservative commentator Benny Johnson tweeted.

"DO NOT use #meta's #Threads," tweeted @bpalanov. "It is already censoring #Conservatives on day 1 of its release. Thank you @elonmusk for leveling the #TRUTH and #FREEDOM playing field. Never touching anything #MarkZuckerberg creates again."

DO NOT use #meta’s #Threads. It is already censoring #Conservatives on day 1 of its release. Thank you @elonmusk for leveling the #TRUTH and #FREEDOM playing field. Never touching anything #MarkZuckerberg creates again. @dbongino @benshapiro @FoxNews @MattWalshBlog #freespeech pic.twitter.com/1cOtA7FPRr

— Boris Palanov (@bpalanov) July 6, 2023

"Facebook's Threads is already censoring conservative voices on its platform, asking users if they're sure they want to follow conservatives because of 'disinformation,'" tweeted conservative commentator Darren Grimes. "We must keep the blue bird of freedom alive. @elonmusk."

Facebook's Threads is already censoring conservative voices on its platform, asking users if they're sure they want to follow conservatives because of 'disinformation'.
We must keep the blue bird of freedom alive. @elonmusk

— Darren Grimes (@darrengrimes_) July 6, 2023

"Zuckerberg can keep his new Threads platform, the fact of the matter is it will never trump Twitter because free speech is king," @Craftmastah tweeted. "While Elon has shown a commitment to upholding the free flow of information, Zuckerberg suppresses stories, throttles users and censors the voices of ppl with the 'wrong opinions.' —No thanks [thumbs down emoji]."

Zuckerberg can keep his new Threads platform, the fact of the matter is it will never trump Twitter because free speech is king.

While Elon has shown a commitment to upholding the free flow of information, Zuckerberg suppresses stories, throttles users and censors the voices of…

— Righteous⚡️Crusader (@Craftmastah) July 6, 2023

Twitter CEO Linda Yaccarino responded to the launch of Threads by tweeting that the "public square" of Twitter is "often imitated," but "can never be duplicated" and is "irreplaceable."

Other users disagreed, arguing that Threads offered a better experience than Twitter since Musk's purchase.

"Threads is way better and the best parts of the twitter community are already over there," Brett Meiselas, co-founder of the liberal PAC Meidas Touch, tweeted in response to Yaccarino. "You probably shouldn't have driven your users away."

Threads is way better and the best parts of the twitter community are already over there. You probably shouldn’t have driven your users away.

— Brett Meiselas (@BMeiselas) July 6, 2023

"Calling it threads will surpass twitter MAU [monthly active users] in 30 days," tweeted @frantzfries."It's a better app, no spam, no ads, an actual trust/safety team and everyone except the crypto grifters are on it 500m MAU in 30 days"

calling it

threads will surpass twitter MAU in 30 days

it’s a better app, no spam, no ads, an actual trust/safety team and everyone except the crypto grifters are on it

500m MAU in 30 days

— Chris Frantz (@frantzfries) July 6, 2023

"Here's one way Threads is already superior to Twitter," @JulieDiCaro tweeted while highlighting the ability of Threads users to block multiple accounts from the same person.

Here's one way Threads is already superior to Twitter: pic.twitter.com/GQiMx9937X

— Julie DiCaro (@JulieDiCaro) July 6, 2023

Twitter lawyer Alex Spiro sent a letter to Zuckerberg threatening to sue over Threads on Thursday, claiming that the platform hired ex-Twitter employees who "continue to have access to Twitter's trade secrets and other highly confidential information." Musk tweeted," competition is fine, cheating is not."

Meta spokesperson Andy Stone disputed the claim in a Threads post, writing that "no one on the Threads engineering team is a former Twitter employee—that's just not a thing."

Newsweek has reached out to Meta via email for comment.

Read more

  • Meta's Threads launch sparks wave of memes, jokes
  • Why Threads could win where other Twitter clones couldn't keep up
  • What is Threads and how to sign up for Meta's Twitter alternative

While Musk said that he would bring neutral and fair moderation policies to Twitter, he has received repeated criticism for adopting new policies that seemingly favor conservatives since taking over the platform, while also urging users to vote for Republicans and denouncing so-called "woke" politics on his own Twitter page.

Musk announced last month that his platform would consider the word "cis," an academic term meaning "not transgender," a "slur." Attorney Andrew Lieb told Newsweek at the time that Musk was "trying to jump into a cultural war and create controversy" to ingratiate himself with "anti-woke" users and help Twitter as a business.

Uncommon Knowledge

Newsweek is committed to challenging conventional wisdom and finding connections in the search for common ground.

Newsweek is committed to challenging conventional wisdom and finding connections in the search for common ground.

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Conservative Twitter users rage after 30 million add Threads app on Day One (2024)

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