In 5 years, Trump has tweeted 2,520 against the press and journalists

In 5 years, Trump has tweeted 2,520 against the press and journalists

There hasn't been a day when the outgoing president of the United States hasn't used Twitter to lash out at reporters and newspapers criticizing his actions

(Photo by Pete Marovich / Getty Images) Since the day of the announcement Donald Trump posted 2,520 tweets to attack, criticize or insult the press on June 15, 2015, to January 8, when Twitter permanently closed his account.

The data comes from an analysis carried out by the Freedom of the Press Foundation, a US non-governmental organization (NGO) that deals with freedom of the press, cyber security for journalism and other issues related to information, with a specific focus on USA. On the board of the organization, which among other things manages the software for digital whistleblowing SecureDrop, also sits Edward Snowden, the former CIA computer scientist who with his revelations started the Datagate, the mass surveillance scandal. in action by some governments without the citizens' knowledge.

The numbers

The Freedom of the Press Foundation has analyzed for more than five years the more than 24,500 tweets posted by Trump, finding that almost 10% of the total was destined to attack the press and, in particular, journalists and journalists who criticized his work as president. The analysis is part of The U.S. Press Freedom Tracker launched by the NGO in collaboration with the Committee to Protect Journalists in order to archive all attacks, both physical and digital, aimed against the media in the United States.

As stated in the analysis of U.S. Press Freedom Tracker, which has published periodic reports on Trump's attacks, the final tally of 2,520 tweets corresponds on average to one tweet against the press per day for five and a half years. In 2020, his last year in office, characterized by the Covid-19 pandemic but also by the protests of the Black Lives Matter movement and an overall radicalization of public debate and far-right forces, Trump posted 633 tweets against the press, the highest result since his entry into the White House.

Overall, Trump posted 515 tweets targeting individual journalists and 810 explicitly targeting news organizations. CNN tops this ranking with 310 tweets, followed by the New York Times and the Msnbc / Nbc network, which “got” 289 and 271 tweets respectively. In the last year in office, the foundation points out, Trump has also accentuated his references to the press as "the opposition party" or as a "partner" of the Democratic Party, "referring to the media as a whole as participants activating a plot against of him and his administration ". Nbc reporter Chuck Todd has the sad distinction of being the first journalist to be directly insulted, on July 12, 2015, and also the last, last January 6.

War without quarter

"Trump's rhetoric against the media has always had a cascade effect", US reporter Stephanie Sugars explains to Wired Press Freedom Tracker, "both in providing convenient media coverage to members of government at all levels in order to belittle the most critical news and restrict journalists' access, and in mythologizing the press as an enemy in the opinion of its supporters" . The actions of the outgoing president against the press on Twitter, Sugars explains, have had direct consequences even outside social media: "we do not have specific data prior to 2017, because our project was born that year, but we have noticed a worrying increase in the number of attacks against journalists in which the President's rhetoric was emphasized and in particular at pro-Trump rallies and demonstrations ”. The data are available here.

The analysis by U.S. Press Freedom Tracker clearly show which media outlets are most targeted by Trump's tweets, but it would be a mistake to assume that Trump's attacks are motivated only by political reasons. News outlets closer to the Trumpian ideological galaxy were also attacked in the same way. Sugars further explains: “Trump has not only insulted, denigrated and questioned the legitimacy of politically left-wing newspapers and journalists. Fox, for example, follows closely in numbers, cited in 259 insulting tweets, mostly during the candidacy phase and the last two years in power. My idea is that these attacks have been directed against people or newspapers who have published criticisms of him or those of his administration, or rather, who have published content that was not flattering towards him ".

The direct effect of these Trump attacks has been seen especially online, where they normalized hostilities towards journalism and legitimized a climate of intimidation, Sugars argues: “His rhetoric against journalism has created an ecosystem in which to discourage and attacking the media is not only more frequent but also allowed. The Committee To Protect Journalists noted, for example, numerous reports from journalists and journalists who, once mentioned by name by the president in a tweet, had to be harassed online, even if it was not possible to document all these cases, due to their huge amount ". As the U.S. Press Freedom Tracker, several US courts have confirmed that Trump's tweets should be considered official statements by the president.

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Topics

Donald Trump Journalism Social media Social Network United States Twitter globalData.fldTopic = "Donald Trump, Journalism, Social media, Social Networks, United States, Twitter"

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