Trump’s Twitter Presidency: 9 Key Takeaways

Donald J. Trump has exploited social media like no different American president, utilizing it as a springboard to alter coverage, as a cudgel towards critics and as an outlet for self-affirmation. “He needs to tweet like we need to eat,” stated Kellyanne Conway, his White House counselor.

Along the way in which, he has lent credibility to unsavory Twitter accounts via his behavior of retweeting posts that catch his consideration, seemingly with out regard for who’s behind them or their motives.

In three articles, The New York Times analyzed Mr. Trump’s posts, studied the accounts he follows and interviewed dozens of administration officers, lawmakers, Twitter executives and peculiar Americans caught up in his tweets. Here are a few of our findings.

Over half of the president’s greater than 11,000 tweets are assaults, aimed toward all the things and everybody from the Russia investigation and the Federal Reserve to black soccer gamers and Amazon’s founder, Jeff Bezos. But in additional than 2,000 tweets, Mr. Trump has cited one individual for reward: himself.

Early in Mr. Trump’s presidency, The Times realized, prime aides mentioned asking Twitter to impose a 15-minute delay on his account, not not like the five-second naughty-word system utilized by tv networks. But they rapidly deserted the concept after recognizing the political peril if the concept leaked to the press — or to their boss.

Twitter accounts tied to state-sponsored propaganda operations in China, Iran and Russia have directed 1000’s of posts at Mr. Trump. The accounts incessantly promoted conspiracy theories or help for Mr. Trump’s insurance policies. One wrote, “We love you Mr. President!” Mr. Trump retweeted it.

The president has retweeted no less than 145 unverified accounts that push conspiracy or extremist content material, together with greater than two dozen which have since been suspended by Twitter. Among them are white nationalists, anti-Muslim bigots and adherents of QAnon, a conspiracy principle involving satanic pedophiles and the “deep state” whose followers have been labeled a possible home terror menace by the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

Much of the questionable materials Mr. Trump recirculates comes from the regular circulation of tweets, about 1,000 per minute, that tag his deal with.But it additionally comes from the tiny variety of accounts that Mr. Trump follows and that make up his curated feed — simply 47 at current, most of them members of his household, celebrities, Fox News hosts or Republican politicians. Some of these individuals, in flip, comply with Twitter accounts that promote QAnon, specific anti-Islam attitudes or espouse white nationalist views.

That’s as a result of he doesn’t wish to put on the studying glasses he must see his iPhone display screen. Instead, the president dictates tweets to Dan Scavino, the White House social media director. Sometimes, Mr. Scavino prints out steered tweets in extra-large fonts for Mr. Trump to log out on.

Mr. Trump’s Twitter behavior is most intense in the beginning of the day, when he’s within the White House residence, usually watching Fox News, scrolling via his Twitter mentions and turning the platform into what one aide referred to as the “ultimate weapon of mass dissemination.” Nearly half of his “attack tweets” had been despatched between 6 a.m. and 10 a.m., time that he spends principally with out advisers current.

The president has bragged 183 instances about his crowd dimension or applause at occasions; attacked immigrants 570 instances; praised dictators 132 instances; and referred to as the information media the “enemy of the people” 36 instances. On 16 events, Mr. Trump referred to himself as everybody’s “favorite president.”

According to information from YouGov, which polls about every of the president’s tweets, among the subjects on which Mr. Trump will get probably the most “likes” and retweets — jabs on the N.F.L., posts in regards to the particular counsel’s investigation, unfounded allegations of widespread voter fraud — ballot poorly with most of the people.

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