Twitter bans Alex Jones for 'behaviour' violations

Sen. Marco Rubio got into a spat with personality Alex Jones on Wednesday

Twitter has announced it's permanently suspended the accounts of conspiracy theory website Infowars and its controversial founder, Alex Jones. Jones had a "heated exchange" with a reporter, and chose to stream it on Twitter.

Last month, Twitter gave Jones a small punishment for his inflammatory behavior on the platform-a one-week suspension that prevented Jones from tweeting or retweeting from his personal account.

The company said Jones would not be able to create new accounts on Twitter or take over any existing ones after posting a video on Wednesday that violates the company's policy against "abusive behavior".

The ban comes one day after CNN's Oliver Darcy was berated by Jones on Capitol Hill, during congressional hearings with social media chiefs. In a tweet, it said it would continue to monitor reports about other accounts potentially associated with Jones or Infowars, and will "take action" if it finds any attempts to circumvent the ban. Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey testified at both hearings, but did not appear to witness the confrontation.

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Jones is now being sued in Texas by two Sandy Hook parents, seeking at least $1 million (£0.77 million), claiming that they have been the subject of harassment driven by his programs. For example, after Dorsey himself tweeted that Twitter was not banning Jones like its counterparts had because "he hasn't violated our rules", an investigation by Darcy led to Twitter admitting that in fact at least seven tweets had broken its rules. Thus far, efforts to hold Jones accountable to the community guidelines of sites he leveraged have resulted in a almost 50 per cent loss of viewership to Infowars.

He criticised the journalist's reporting and appearance, referencing his "skinny jeans" and repeatedly saying, "just look at this guy's eyes" and "look at that smile".

After talking over Rubio a few times, Jones tapped the senator on the shoulder, as seen in video live-streamed and promoted by Cassandra Fairbanks, a right-wing blogger and an activist.

Rubio turned to him and said, "Hey, don't touch me again - I'm asking you not to touch me".

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