Canadian psychologist and author Dr Jordan Peterson has announced he’s quitting Twitter after receiving “an endless flood of vicious insults” on the platform. Peterson’s departure comes after he was criticised for a controversial tweet that shamed plus-size model Yumi Nu’s Sports Illustrated Swimsuit cover.
On Monday, Peterson explained that he stopped using Twitter three weeks ago and instead instructed his staff to post to his account. However, as he started using the app again, he said his “life got worse again almost instantly.”
“The endless flood of vicious insult is really not something that can be experienced anywhere else,” he continued his Twitter thread. “I like to follow the people I know but I think the incentive structure of the platform makes it intrinsically and dangerously insane.”
He added: “So I told my staff to change my password, to keep me from temptation, and am departing once again. If I have something to say I’ll write an article or make a video. If the issue is not important enough to justify that then perhaps it would be best to just let it go.”
Peterson concluded his sign-off by saying that he plans to “write an article on the technical reasons that Twitter is maddening us all very soon. Bye for now.”
The former University of Toronto professor, who has more than 2.7m followers on Twitter, rose to prominence in 2016 when he began posting lectures online sharing his controversial opinions on masculinity, political correctness, and the gender pay gap.
Peterson received backlash on Monday after he shamed 25-year-old Nu by calling her “not beautiful” after the plus-size model’s cover debut for the 2022 Sports Illustrated Swimsuit issue.
And I plan to write an article on the technical reasons that Twitter is maddening us all very soon. Bye for now. https://t.co/naJnLabtqz
— Dr Jordan B Peterson (@jordanbpeterson) May 17, 2022
“Sorry. Not beautiful,” he tweeted. “And no amount of authoritarian tolerance is going to change that.”
Peterson’s tweet angered many fans, and prompted many to come to Nu’s defence. Now, Twitter users are also pointing out the hypocrisy in Peterson quitting Twitter for receiving a series of “vicious insults,” only after he had shamed Nu that same day.
Sorry. Not beautiful. And no amount of authoritarian tolerance is going to change that. https://t.co/rOASeeQvee
— Dr Jordan B Peterson (@jordanbpeterson) May 16, 2022
Michael Schur, co-creator of The Office and Parks and Recreation, tweeted: “You opened your computer, logged into an app, typed out your opinion that a woman was not beautiful (when no one had asked you), and then complained when people said you were an a**hole. Seems to me you just pretty much nailed the entire Twitter experience.”
“This coming from the guy who just felt it necessary to broadcast to his 2.7m followers that he thought a woman was ugly,” said writer Billy Binion. “Don’t let anyone tell you that the left has a monopoly on victim culture.”
“Didn’t you tweet just to randomly insult the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit issue cover model? Isn’t condescending and randomly targeted unpleasantness kind of your brand?” said politics reporter Max Burns.
You opened your computer, logged into an app, typed out your opinion that a woman was not beautiful (when no one had asked you), and then complained when people said you were an asshole. Seems to me you just pretty much nailed the entire twitter experience. https://t.co/BHQ4BC09Hs
— Ken Tremendous (@KenTremendous) May 17, 2022
This coming from the guy who just felt it necessary to broadcast to his 2.7 million followers that he thought a woman was ugly. Don’t let anyone tell you that the left has a monopoly on victim culture. https://t.co/K5BHmSQOMf
— Billy Binion (@billybinion) May 17, 2022
Didn't you tweet just to randomly insult the Sports Illustrated swimsuit issue cover model? Isn't condescending and randomly targeted unpleasantness kind of your brand? https://t.co/3rc5v9xkzs
— Max Burns (@themaxburns) May 17, 2022
Nu joined fellow cover stars Kim Kardashian, Maye Musk, and Ciara as Sports Illustrated Swimsuit’s faces for the 2022 edition. Many fans praised and congratulated Nu on her cover, while the model took to her Instagram page to celebrate the occasion. She captioned the social media post with a picture of her cover: “I have not been able to sleep, breathe or think straight since I found out.”
“I never dreamt of this because I didn’t know that I could,” she said. “Thank you from the bottom of my heart @mj_day and @si_swimsuit family for believing in me. I’m so honoured to make history with you.”