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US activist, Alex Jones, permanently banned by Twitter over abusive behaviour

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Social media site said the conspiracy theorist posted video that violated company policies

Alex Jones speaks outside of the Dirksen building of Capitol Hill in Washington on Wednesday. (Jose Luis Magana/Associated Press)
Twitter is permanently banning right-wing conspiracy theorist Alex Jones and his Infowars show for abusive behaviour.

Twitter says Jones won’t be able to create new accounts on Twitter or take over any existing ones. Twitter says Jones posted a video on Wednesday that is in violation of the company’s policy against “abusive behaviour.”

The video in question shows Jones shouting berating CNN journalist Oliver Darcy for some 10 minutes during U.S. congressional hearings about social media. Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey testified at both hearings, but did not appear to witness the confrontation.

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Jones had about 900,000 followers on Twitter. Infowars had about 430,000.

Twitter had previously suspended Jones for a week. But until now, it had resisted muzzling Jones further. Other tech companies have limited Jones by suspending him for longer periods, as Facebook did, and by taking down his pages and radio stations.

Jones heckled Darcy in a public hallway where reporters were waiting to enter the House committee room. He criticized the journalist’s reporting and appearance, referencing his “skinny jeans” and repeatedly saying, “just look at this guy’s eyes” and “look at that smile.”

At one point, he said Darcy was “smiling like a possum that crawled out of the rear end of a dead cow. That’s what you look like. You look like a possum that got caught doing some really nasty stuff — in my view. You’re a public figure too.”

Darcy has aggressively questioned social media companies about the forbearance they showed Jones, asking why they have allowed him to remain on their platforms for as long as they have.

Jones is currently active on Facebook; his suspension there recently expired

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