Elon Musk's acquisition of Twitter has some in Hollywood heading for the exit.
"Grey's Anatomy" creator Shonda Rhimes and others in the entertainment industry say they plan to quit the platform now that it is owned by Musk, a self-proclaimed "free speech absolutist" who has vowed to make sweeping changes — including potentially reversing the ban on former President Donald Trump.
"Not hanging around for whatever Elon has planned. Bye," Rhimes tweeted to her nearly 2 million Twitter followers on Saturday afternoon, two days after the billionaire tycoon closed his $44 billion deal to purchase the service.
Not hanging around for whatever Elon has planned. Bye.
— shonda rhimes (@shondarhimes) October 29, 2022
Here's a running list of other folks from the overlapping worlds of television, movies, music and sports who say they plan to leave.
The Grammy-winning singer/songwriter tweeted to her nearly 3 million followers on Sunday: "Welp. It's been fun Twitter. I'm out. See you on the other platforms, peeps.
"Sorry, this one's just not for me," Bareilles added, capping her post with a heart and prayer-hands emoji.
Welp. It’s been fun Twitter. I’m out. See you on other platforms, peeps. Sorry, this one’s just not for me. ❤️🙏🏼
— Sara Bareilles (@SaraBareilles) October 30, 2022
In a tweet to her nearly 2 million followers on Friday, the Grammy-winning R&B star decried the content she said she had seen on Twitter since Musk's takeover, writing in part: "I'm shocked and appalled at some of the 'free speech' I've seen on this platform since its acquisition."
"Hate speech under the veil of 'free speech' is unacceptable; therefore I am choosing to stay off Twitter as it is no longer a safe space for myself, my sons and other POC," Braxton added, using an acronym for people of color.
I'm shocked and appalled at some of the "free speech" I've seen on this platform since its acquisition. Hate speech under the veil of "free speech" is unacceptable; therefore I am choosing to stay off Twitter as it is no longer a safe space for myself, my sons and other POC.
— Toni Braxton (@tonibraxton) October 29, 2022
Foley, a retired professional wrestler and actor, said in a post on his public, verified Facebook page that he is taking a "break" from Twitter "since the new ownership — and the misinformation and hate it seems to be encouraging — has my stomach in a knot."
"I really do enjoy connecting with all of you on social media, but it can get overwhelming sometimes. I think I’ll be back on in a few weeks, but in the meantime, I will continue to post on Facebook and Instagram," Foley wrote on Friday. "I hope all of you will be kind to one another.
"Please vote if you can too — our democracy seems to be hanging on by a thread," he added. (Foley's Twitter account appears to be deactivated.)
Koppelman, the co-creator of the Showtime dramas "Billions" and "Super Pumped: The Battle For Uber," recently tweeted: "Y’all’s, for real, come find me over on instagram and the tok. Gonna really try to take a breather from here for a minute or a month come deal close time."
The screenwriter and producer has since locked his tweets, meaning that only approved followers can see what he posts.
Larsen, a comic book creator and artist best known for "The Amazing Spider-Man," reportedly tweeted in April that "the day Elon Musk buys Twitter is the day I delete my account and leave Twitter."
Larsen's handle, @ErikJLarsen, appeared to be deactivated Monday.
In an email to NBC News, Larsen confirmed he is finished with Twitter.
"Yeah, I left. I said I would leave if Musk bought Twitter. Musk bought Twitter," he said. "So, I had no choice. The move only emboldened those most toxic users. The racists, 'patriots' and creeps are back in full force."
"I have no regrets," he added.
Leoni, an actor best known for starring on the CBS political drama "Madam Secretary," tweeted to her roughly 124,000 followers on Saturday: "Hi everyone. I’m coming off Twitter today—let’s see where we are when the dust settles."
"Today the dust has revealed too much hate, too much in the wrong direction," Leoni added. "Love, kindness, and possibilities for all of you."
Hi everyone. I’m coming off Twitter today—let’s see where we are when the dust settles. Today the dust has revealed too much hate, too much in the wrong direction. Love, kindness, and possibilities for all of you, thank you,
— Téa Leoni (@TeaLeoni) October 29, 2022
Olin, an executive producer of the NBC show "This Is Us" and a former star of the ABC drama series "Thirtysomething," tweeted to his roughly 293,000 followers that he is "out of here." He then made a plea for kindness and peace.
Hey all –
I’m out of here. No judgement.
Let’s keep the faith.
Let’s protect our democracy.
Let’s try to be kinder.
Let’s try to save the planet.
Let’s try to be more generous.
Let’s look to find peace in the world.
— Ken Olin (@kenolin1) October 28, 2022
Winter, an actor and filmmaker best known for playing Bill in the "Bill & Ted" film series alongside Keanu Reeves, locked his Twitter account sometime after Musk's acquisition. His bio on the site now says "Not here" and links to his Instagram profile.
"Elon Musk taking over Twitter and making it a private company with less oversight has immediately made the platform more prone to hate speech, targeted attacks, and the spread of disinformation," Winter said in an email to NBC News."If Twitter returns to being a public company run by rational actors, many of us will return."
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