Verified neo-Nazi accounts flourishing on X, report says

Violent extremism has reportedly thrived on the social media app formerly known as Twitter


Tech billionaire and X/Twitter CEO Elon Musk (Photo: Sergei Gapon/AFP)

Hundreds of neo-Nazis are using verified profiles to spread hate on X/Twitter, an investigation has claimed.

Over a year after polarising tech billionaire Elon Musk bought the social media platform and allowed users to purchese a “premium” account, the site is regularly being used to promote fascism.

The accounts, revealed by NBC, consistently shared swastikas, praise for Nazi soldiers and Holocaust denial.

During one week last month, seven of the most widely shared pro-Nazi posts on X accrued 4.5 million views in total, the NBC investigation claims.

One post with 1.9 million views claimed that six million Jews did not die in the Holocaust.

It was shared by over 5,300 verified and unverified accounts, while other popular posts were reshared hundreds of times.

X, which was called Twitter until Musk’s takeover, has a policy banning the glorification of violence which appears to be sporadicly enforced.

NBC news found the offensive posts in question by scrolling through the platform and looking at the replies to popular posts.

Those verified users sharing Nazi propaganda pay X $8 a month to have the prominence of their posts artificially boosted.

Patrick Riccards, executive director of Life After Hate, a Milwaukee-based organisation that helps people leave violent extremist groups, told NBC that the prominence of fascism online would spur radicalisation. 

He said: “For those who are already driven by hate, it is a big warm hug. They’re wanting to find individuals to take physical action when the time comes.”

Last year, advertisers including IBM and Comcast stopped advertising on X after a report claimed that their posts were appearing alongside pro-Nazi material.

“IBM has zero tolerance for hate speech and discrimination and we have immediately suspended all advertising on X while we investigate this entirely unacceptable situation,” the company said in November.

Musk himself sparked outrage last year when he replied to a user who had claimed “Jewish communities” push hatred of white people to say, “You have said the actual truth.”

Writing on X, Anti-Defamation League CEO Jonathan Greenblatt said at the time: “At a time when antisemitism is exploding in America and surging around the world, it is indisputably dangerous to use one’s influence to validate and promote antisemitic theories.”

Musk later apologised for the “dumb” post, before insisting in reference to advertisers leaving X: “If someone is going to blackmail me with advertising or money go f**k yourself. Go. F**k. Yourself. Is that clear?"

In January of this year, Musk visited Auschwitz on a European Jewish Congress organised trip and admitted that he had been “frankly naïve” about antisemitism.

“In the circles I move, I see almost none,” he said. “Two thirds of my friends are Jewish… I’m Jewish by association.”

X was contacted for comment.

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