The Twitter account that tracks Elon Musk's private jet has been shadowbanned, its owner says

Elon Musk in 2020
Jack Sweeney says his @ElonJet account has been shadowbanned.Yasin Ozturk/Getty Images
  • The Twitter user that tracks Elon Musk's private jet says the account has been shadowbanned.

  • Jack Sweeney shared messages that appear to show the account was subject to "visibility filtering."

  • Sweeney runs more than 30 plane-tracking accounts that share publicly available data.

A Twitter user who runs an account which tracks Elon Musk's private jet says it has been shadowbanned since Musk bought the platform.

Jack Sweeney, the person behind the jet tracking account, ElonJet, took to Twitter on Sunday to accuse the social media platform of suppressing the automated account.

In a thread Sweeney dubbed, "My Twitter Files," he claimed an anonymous Twitter employee informed him that his ElonJet account was "visibility limited/restricted to a severe degree internally" on December 2.

He also shared what appeared to be an internal Twitter message from Ella Irwin, Twitter's new head of Trust and Safety, requesting that ElonJet be subjected to "heavy VF [visibility filtering].

Sweeney told Insider that he'd suspected "for quite a while" that "@ElonJet was definitely search banned/ search suggestion banned" before the supposed Twitter employee contacted him.

Insider has not been able to independently verify Sweeney's claims.

Shadowbanning generally makes a user's profile and posts more difficult to find without alerting the user. Some users had already claimed that they couldn't search or tag the jet tracking account through suggested usernames.

Musk has previously publicly criticized the practice of shadowbanning and said that Twitter is working on a feature that will clearly show users when they've been shadowbanned.

The Tesla CEO has taken issue with the jet-tracking account before, accusing it of being a security risk and once offering to buy it. Sweeney operates more than 30 plane-tracking accounts that share publicly available data. Many of the accounts track billionaires, including Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg, Amazon founder Jeff Bezos, and Microsoft's Bill Gates.

Such accounts have become so much of a concern to LVMH CEO Bernard Arnault that he recently sold his private jet and moved to using rental planes to avoid tracking.

Musk had previously said he wouldn't ban the Twitter account because of his free-speech commitments.

Representatives for Twitter did not immediately reply to Insider's request for comment, made early Monday morning.

Read the original article on Business Insider