According to reports by Independent Journal Review (IJR), conservative actor Adam Baldwin has quit Twitter and doesn’t plan on returning. “Twitter is dead to me,” Baldwin told IJR yesterday. Famous for his role in Firefly and as the originator of #GamerGate, his departure comes as a response to Twitter’s ‘censorship’ of conservative voices. Baldwin told IJR that Twitter’s new policy of punishing accounts that it finds “offensive” is what drove him from the social network:
It’s really a shame that so-called ‘liberal thinkers’ and the so called ‘tolerant crowd’ is intolerant of varying viewpoints. They’re so afraid to hear people disagree with them. Instead of ignoring it or providing their own arguments in return, they say “shut up!”
With 230,000 followers, Baldwin is a big name on Twitter. However, he appears to have deleted his whole Twitter history, except for a tweet requesting that the company’s CEO Jack Dorsey be fired, and the service abolishes its controversial new Trust and Safety Council.
— Adam Baldwin (@AdamBaldwin) February 22, 2016
Baldwin points to the recent banning of Robert Stacy McCain as one of the reasons for leaving. Additionally, he highlights the demise of Twitter as he sees it, saying “This group-think, Orwellian, so-called Safety Council is really killing the wild west of ideas that Twitter was,” and:
That’s what made Twitter fun. You could run across all sorts of differing viewpoints. That is what free speech is all about. As long as you’re not threatening people with violence, have at it.
Baldwin told IJR that Sarkeesian’s position with the Trust and Safety Council also affected his decision to leave, levelling blame at her for Joss Whedon’s departure last year. Whedon has previously worked with Baldwin as the director of Firefly and is known for directing Marvel’s Avengers. He said, “Joss Whedon got off Twitter and that really shocked me,” claiming that “Sarkeesian had a big hand in Joss leaving.”
This news breaks to the background of controversial Conservative journalist Milo Yiannopoulos losing his Twitter verification, and many on the platform expressing worries that the service is deliberately censoring content through hiding tweets and quashing hashtags (known as ‘shadow-banning’).
Don't know anything for sure, but there's definitely something weird going on… pic.twitter.com/f4PeXt6dtl
— Lauren Southern (@Lauren_Southern) February 16, 2016
We have contacted Baldwin for comment and will update as we hear more.