Hi all. It has probably become obvious to anyone that may have been following this Blog for some time that posts have become few and far between of late. I think I have more-or-less struggled over the years with times of poor health, but no more so than the current time. It is a many faceted problem and I won’t go into all of the details. Essentially, something needs to change (or a number of things really). Being still at work and clearly needing to continue to work in order to feed myself, etc, sadly it has beome time to change the way I do things around my many Blogs, etc. I have always enjoyed being online and keeping blogs and websites ticking over, but it has now become an almost impossible chore.
What will change is that this Blog will remain up as an archive, while also providing a gateway (via a link) to my Facebook Group (Informed Insight), where I hope to continue posting curated articles/links/videos, etc. It is so much quicker and easier to do that there than having to write code, etc, here. Essentially, the only real change will be the location of the information.
If you would like to continue the journey with me, please visit the Facebook Group linked to below – and thank you for visiting me here over the years.
The loss of public access to Trump’s original Twitter posts means every online hyperlink to a tweet is now defunct. Embedded tweets are still visible as simple text, but can no longer be traced to their source.
Adding to this, retweets of the president’s messages no longer appear on the forwarding user’s feed. Quote tweets have been replaced with the message: “This Tweet is unavailable” and replies can’t be viewed in one place anymore.
But even if Trump’s account had not been suspended, he would have had to part with it at the end of his presidency anyway, since he used it extensively for presidential purposes.
Under the US government’s ethics regulations, US officials are prevented from benefiting personally from their public office, and this applies to social media accounts.
Former US ambassador to the United Nations, Nikki Haley, also used her personal and political Twitter accounts to conduct official business as ambassador. The account was wiped and renamed in 2019 once her role ended.
Where did all the information go?
Despite being permanently suspended, Trump’s prolific Twitter record is not lost. Under the Presidential Records Act, all of Trump’s social media communications are considered public property, including non-public messages sent via direct chat features.
The act defines presidential records as any materials created or received by the president (or immediate staff or advisors) in the course of conducting his official duties.
It was passed in 1978, out of concern that former president Richard Nixon would destroy the tapes which ultimately led to his resignation. Today, it remains a way to force governments to be transparent with the public.
And although Trump tweeted extensively from his personal Twitter account created in 2009, @realDonaldTrump, it has undoubtedly been used for official purposes.
As such, the US National Archives says it will preserve all of them, including deleted posts — as well as all posts from @POTUS, the official presidential account.
The Trump administration will have to turn over the digital records for both accounts on January 20, which will eventually be made available to the public on a Trump Library website.
Still, the president reserves the right to invoke as many as six specific restrictions to public access for up to 12 years.
We don’t know whether Trump will invoke restrictions. But even if he does, grassroots initiatives have already archived all of his tweets.
For example, the Trump Twitter Archive is a free, public resource that lets users search and filter through more than 56,000 tweets by Trump since 2009, including deleted tweets since 2016.
A matter of public record
In 2017, Trump told Fox News he believed he may have never been elected without Twitter — and that he viewed it as an effective means for pushing his message.
Twitter also benefited from this relationship. Trump’s 88 million followers (as of when his account was suspended) generated endless streams of user engagement for the social media giant.
Trump’s approach to using Twitter was unprecedented. He bypassed traditional media channels, instead tweeting for political and diplomatic purposes — including to make important policy announcements.
His tweets set the agenda for US politics during his presidency. For example, they influenced foreign relations between the US and Mexico, North Korea, China and Iran. They were also used to endorse allies and attack rivals.
For all the reasons listed above, the value of Trump’s Twitter record extends beyond historical research. It’s a way to hold him accountable for what he has said and done.
And this will soon be on display as the US Democratic Party looks to impeach him for the second time for “inciting insurrection”.
Trump’s administration of “alternative facts” has continuously stonewalled a number of enquiries — going as far as refusing to testify before Congress on certain matters.
From this frame of view, Trump’s Twitter feed was arguably one of few places where his claims and decisions could really be scrutinised. And indeed, news coverage of the president often relied heavily on this.
The amplification effect
The media’s reliance on president Trump’s tweets ultimately highlights a key aspect that governs today’s hybrid media system. That is, it’s highly responsive to a populist communication style.
Trump’s use of Twitter indirectly contributed to his election success in 2016, by helping boost media coverage of his campaign. Researchers also observed him strategically increasing his Twitter activity in line with waning news interest.
Through a constant stream of provocative remarks, Trump exploited news values and continuously inserted himself into the news cycle. And for journalists under pressure to churn out content, his impassioned messages were the perfect sound bites.
Now, stripped of his favourite mouthpiece, it’s uncertain whether Trump will find another way to exert his influence. But one thing is for sure: his time on Twitter will go down in history.
For all the news of what is happening in Ghana with the Grace Baptist Mission under the ministry of Pastor Noah Quarshie visit the web site (the URL is given at the end of the post).
All of the newsletters can be found on the web site with an archive going back to 2001. So for all the latest be sure to check out the newsletters.
The Grace Baptist Mission is keen for partnerships in the gospel to be forged, with assistance in various ways required for the furtherance of the gospel in Ghana. If you are able to assist by giving money for specific needs, the newsletters give updates on what the current needs are. There are also possible openings for actually going to Ghana and physically assisting in the ministry for a period of time.