This week, Meta’s Threads gained massive popularity, with over 70 million accounts being registered within approximately 40 hours of its launch. Among these users was an individual who had been causing trouble for Elon Musk by posting what the Twitter founder had once referred to as “basically assassination coordinates” for him.
However, Meta temporarily suspended the @elonmusksjet account on both Instagram and Threads. Jack Sweeney, the creator of the account, utilizes publicly available flight data to share real-time updates on the whereabouts of Musk’s private jet. Sweeney expressed on Twitter that Meta had prior knowledge of the account’s existence on Instagram (since Threads accounts are currently linked to Instagram) and hoped that the suspension was a mistake on Meta’s part. BuyTechBlog reached out to Meta, and a spokesperson confirmed that the suspension of the accounts was indeed an error. They stated, “This was an error and should not have occurred. It has been rectified.”
Okay, I’m assuming people are exploiting the reporting system on Threads, but ElonJet was just suspended on IG/Threads. Meta has been aware for a while that I’ve had ElonJet on their platform, so I hope this is a mistake. Anyway, here’s to BlueSky. pic.twitter.com/w0lnY72Rs2
— Jack Sweeney (@Jxck_Sweeney) July 7, 2023
The Meta moderators seemed to have noticed the account earlier on Friday as well. According to former BuyTechBlog member Saqib Shah, Meta mistakenly removed the account from Threads but quickly restored @elonmusksjet before suspending it once again, only to eventually reinstate it permanently.
Previously, Sweeney used to post the flight information of the plane on Twitter under the handle @elonjet, which had bothered Musk even before he acquired the company. At one point, Musk offered Sweeney $5,000 to delete the account, but the offer was declined. A counteroffer of $50,000 or an internship at one of Musk’s companies never materialized.
In December, a few months after Musk purchased Twitter, the company permanently suspended the ElonJet account. Around the same time, Twitter updated its rules regarding private information, limiting users from sharing “publicly available location information after a reasonable time has passed, so that the individual is no longer at risk of physical harm.”
Sweeney created a new Twitter account that displays the location of Musk’s jet with a 24-hour delay, complying with the revised policy. ElonJet accounts on other platforms, such as Facebook, Telegram, Mastodon, and Bluesky, provide more up-to-date information. There is also a subreddit dedicated to tracking the plane.
ElonJet never truly disappeared for long, but it was particularly fitting for it to resurface on Threads. This new app poses a direct competition to Twitter, to the extent that Twitter has threatened Meta with legal action, accusing it of utilizing former employees and trade secrets to develop the Threads app.
Update 7/7 3:51PM ET: Meta has suspended @elonmusksjet on Instagram and Threads.
Update 7/7 9:40PM ET: Meta informed BuyTechBlog that the suspension of @elonmusksjet on Instagram and Threads was an error and the accounts have been restored since then.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about Meta, Elon Musk, private jet, suspension, restoration
Why were the Instagram and Threads accounts tracking Elon Musk’s private jet temporarily suspended by Meta?
The accounts were temporarily suspended by Meta due to an apparent error on their part. The suspension was not intentional and was later acknowledged as a mistake by Meta. The accounts have since been restored.
Who created the accounts tracking Elon Musk’s private jet?
The accounts were created by Jack Sweeney, who used publicly available flight data to share real-time updates on the whereabouts of Elon Musk’s private jet.
Did Meta know about the existence of these accounts on Instagram and Threads?
Yes, Meta was aware of the existence of these accounts on Instagram. Since Threads accounts are currently linked to Instagram, Meta had prior knowledge of their presence on the platform.
Did Elon Musk try to stop the tracking of his private jet?
Elon Musk had expressed his displeasure with the tracking of his private jet in the past. He once offered Jack Sweeney $5,000 to delete the account, but the offer was declined. A counteroffer of $50,000 or an internship at one of Musk’s companies did not materialize.
What other platforms display real-time information about Elon Musk’s private jet?
Apart from Instagram and Threads, the location of Elon Musk’s private jet is tracked and shared on platforms such as Twitter (with a 24-hour delay), Facebook, Telegram, Mastodon, Bluesky, and even a dedicated subreddit.