UPDATED: The White House, President Joe Biden and his presidential campaign are launching accounts on Threads, the Meta rival to Elon Musk’s embattled X/Twitter.
First Lady Jill Biden, Vice President Kamala Harris and Second Gentleman Doug Emhoff also are launching Threads accounts, along with LaCasaBlanca. Threads also will see the @joebiden and @kamalaharris campaign accounts.
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The launch on Threads has been in the works for several weeks, and there are no plans to change the administration’s usage of X/Twitter, according to a source familiar with the decision. The launch on Threads was a decision made based on its usage, the source said.
But the announcement comes after the White House condemned Musk’s amplification and endorsement of an antisemitic post last week. That was followed by a number of advertisers suspending their spending on X/Twitter, although there also were concerns raised by a Media Matters report showing major brands had their spots run near pro-Nazi posts. Major media companies, including Comcast, The Walt Disney Co. and Warner Bros. Discovery, announced that they were pausing ads, along with other brands like Apple and IBM.
Musk has pushed back against claims that he is antisemitic, while he has threatened a lawsuit against Media Matters.
The White House’s launch on Threads could give the platform a high profile boost. It launched last summer and initially benefited from the migration of users from X/Twitter following Musk’s changes to the platform. But Threads still is not the go-to social media site for major announcements and breaking news.
At today’s press briefing, White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre again condemned Musk’s endorsement of the antisemitic post, and said that they would continue to call out such comments.
In one of his first posts, Biden , whose birthday is today, wrote, “I turned 81 and all I got was a new social platform!Thanks for the well-wishes, folks. And to the workers at the birthday candle factory, I hope your union got you overtime.”
The president, meanwhile, also promoted his new Threads account — on X/Twitter.
We’re live on Threads, folks. pic.twitter.com/it1PIgPSIi
— President Biden (@POTUS) November 20, 2023
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