Officials working for Annalena Baerbock, Germany’s progressive foreign minister, reportedly told Twitter in July to censor an account mocking her.
Civil servants from within Baerbock’s department had requested Elon Musk’s social media platform X take action against the account “Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock (parody)”, which was set up to make fun of The Greens party politician.
According to a report in German news outlet Bild, foreign office chiefs are said to have approached Twitter requesting that “action be taken” to deal with the account, claiming it could be confused for Baerbock’s real profile.
This was seemingly despite the fact that the account had “parody” contained in its title, as required under Twitter’s rules.
A very warm welcome of our value friends 🏳️🌈🇸🇦 but I don’t know why they rejected my Bacon of Hope from Germany and why all men are wearing bath robes. I look forward to the talks about feminist foreign policy pic.twitter.com/2t6HnsLNo2
— Außenministerin Parody Annalena Baerbock (@baerbockpress) August 7, 2023
“The Federal Foreign Office therefore informed Twitter/X of this risk of confusion on July 28 and asked them to take measures to counteract it,” a spokesman for the ministry said.
Despite seemingly being in line with Twitter’s own community guidelines, the demand to “deal with” the parody account was met by the platform, with the profile being taken down soon after the request was issued.
It was quickly reinstated after a minor name change, with the page now being called “Foreign Minister Parody Annalena Baerbock”.
Sporting almost 60,000 followers on the platform, the parody account frequently makes fun of Baerbock’s hard-left progressive politics, especially regarding her push for a “feminist foreign policy“.
“Our economy is not growing anymore, but our feminism is growing every day,” one post reads. “The world will follow!”
The minister’s unfortunate habit of mauling English phrases is also frequently mocked by the profile, with Baerbock previously being ridiculed for praising South Africa’s path to freedom as being a “bacon of hope” for the rest of the world.
— Argo Nerd (@argonerd) June 29, 2023
The term has since become a line frequently used to mock the minister’s verbal gaffs, which have occurred in both English and German.