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    SPD withdraws from Platform X


    At the most recent party conference to nominate the European election candidates, the silence of the SPD party executive was already noticeable: statements from the Chancellor and other prominent Social Democrats such as top candidate Katarina Barley no longer appeared on the central party channel on platform X – formerly Twitter. The party executive is now officially withdrawing from a communication channel that was long considered essential in the Willy Brandt House in order to spread messages directly to as many people as possible.

    “After Elon Musk took over the short message service Daily Mirror-Retreat report. X has fired thousands of employees who were responsible for taking action against hate messages spread on the platform: “The spread of disinformation, fake news and hateful propaganda is now the order of the day there” – especially through Russian troll factories.

    Party leader Esken and General Secretary Kühnert have deleted their accounts

    Exciting voices that had made the discourse on Twitter interesting and fruitful before Musk's takeover and the renaming to “We invest our time in other channels that are more relevant for political communication such as Tiktok, Instagram, Facebook, YouTube and Whatsapp,” says the SPD spokeswoman. However, SPD politicians are not given any requirements for their own X accounts. The Bundestag faction has also continued to be active on

    SPD leader Lars Klingbeil, on the other hand, hardly publishes anything on X anymore. Co-chair Saskia Esken said goodbye in October 2022, and Secretary General Kevin Kühnert also deleted his account. In the last few days, several scientific organizations and foundations have also said goodbye.

    The Greens do not want to leave X to enemies of democracy

    Hardly any party continues to use the portal as intensively as the AfD. The right-wing extremist party sees no reason to withdraw. For them, X is an important channel to convey their worldview to their followers beyond the traditional media. Many tweets represent radicalization; they promote mass deportations or accuse the government of “left-wing totalitarianism.” According to the AfD headquarters, there is “no reason to leave the only social network that still upholds freedom of expression.” It shows little democratic understanding when organizations and even government agencies leave X “because they don't like the opinions of users.”

    Unlike the SPD leadership, according to a spokeswoman, the Greens have not yet considered withdrawing. Green Party leaders are repeatedly the target of hatred and agitation on the platform. But if democratic parties and politicians generally withdraw, the field would be left entirely to those forces that want to harm democracy, say the Greens. Just a few days ago, Annalena Baerbock's Foreign Ministry uncovered a pro-Russian disinformation campaign on the platform. With thousands of fake user accounts, the false news campaign is said to have created a mood against the policies of the traffic light coalition and the federal government.

    In the CDU, leaving X is “not an issue at the moment,” says a spokeswoman. There are no visible efforts in the Union faction either. And the FDP also wants to stay. The party says it has a constitutional mandate to help shape the will of the people. “In order to actually reach people, we have to align our public relations work with their media usage. This is especially true for extremely popular platforms like X.” They don't want to leave the field to forces outside the center. The CSU sounds similar: “For us as a digital people's party, X is an important pillar in our daily communication with citizens and the media.”

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