On Wednesday night, Elon Musk revealed that a crazy stalker had followed a car with his 2-year-old son inside, blocked off the road, and climbed onto the hood. He posted a video to Twitter showing the man’s partially-covered face and license plate, asking the Twitterverse if anyone recognized the man who had threatened his son’s safety.
“Last night, car carrying lil X in LA was followed by crazy stalker (thinking it was me), who later blocked car from moving & climbed onto hood.
Legal action is being taken against Sweeney & organizations who supported harm to my family.”
He then posted a video of the man who had been following his son, along with the man’s license plate.
Anyone recognize this person or car? pic.twitter.com/2U0Eyx7iwl
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) December 15, 2022
Musk also said that “Any account doxxing real-time location info of anyone will be suspended, as it is a physical safety violation.”
“Posting locations someone traveled to on a slightly delayed basis isn’t a safety problem, so is ok,” Musk added.
“Sweeney” is in reference to the 20-year-old University of Central Florida student Jack Sweeney, who created ElonJet, a Twitter account that tracked the movements of Musk’s private jet for years using data that was available in the public domain.
Despite having previously stated that he would not be suspending the ElonJet account due to his commitment to upholding free speech on the social media platform, Musk suspended the account on Wednesday after his son’s well-being was threatened.
Hours later, Twitter imposed new rules that accounts aren’t allowed to share someone’s current location. The Twitter Safety account posted its new policy, saying,
“When someone shares an individual’s live location on Twitter, there is an increased risk of physical harm. Moving forward, we’ll remove Tweets that share this information, and accounts dedicated to sharing someone else’s live location will be suspended.”
Sweeney commented on this suspension to News 6, saying, “I just said, ‘You know, I don’t believe I violated any terms,’ but I mean in the conditions I’m in, I don’t think they’re really going to do anything. I would just like to work it out in a better way for both of us so it doesn’t look as bad for him and I end (up) happier than with a banned account. I think we can come to better terms.”
The university student added that he didn’t think the suspension was fair, saying, “It’s the complete opposite of what he said about a month ago. Over the weekend (after Musk tweeted about the account in November), I got a message from someone at Twitter saying that they were visibility filtering and I posted all about that. I guess that could’ve been like a warning that they were really, like, bothered by it.”
Musk also got criticism from Twitter users after posting the video of the stalker, accusing him of violating his own rule by posting a person online without their consent. However, most responses to Musk’s post were supportive of the actions he took to protect himself and his family.