| 4 March 2024, Monday |

Paris mayor quits X platform, calling it a ‘gigantic global sewer’

Paris Mayor Anne Hidalgo announced her departure from the X platform, formerly known as Twitter, on Monday, describing it as a “gigantic global sewer” that was “destroying our democracies” by spreading hate and misinformation.

Elon Musk cut off thousands of people after purchasing Twitter in 2022, including many who monitored content on the network. After being rebranded as X, it lost many large advertisers and was chastised by critics, including the White House, for failing to do enough to combat antisemitism.

“This platform and its owner intentionally exacerbates tensions and conflicts,” Hidalgo said in lengthy posts in English and French, citing manipulation, disinformation, antisemitism and attacks on scientists, climatologists, women and liberals.

Hidalgo’s campaign to transform Paris into a cycling capital has earned her both scorn and praise on social media over the years, with some users criticising the seemingly endless work and visually unappealing worksites under the #SaccageParis (WreckParis) hashtag.

“This medium has become a gigantic global sewer, and we should continue to wade into it?” asked the Socialist politician, whose failed bid for the French presidency garnered 1.7% of the vote in 2022.

“I refuse to endorse this evil scheme,” she said.

More recently, she has come under fire for a trip to the French island of Tahiti purportedly to view a 2024 Olympics surfing site, but that opponents said did not fall under her remit and during which she visited her daughter who lives there.

X users and opposition politicians took to the #TahitiGate hashtag to lambast her over the partially taxpayer-funded trip.

  • Reuters