The National Archives and Records Administration is a federal agency responsible for the retention of historically significant federal records, including tweets from senior government officials. For example, former Trump White House spokeswoman Sarah Huckabee Sanders handed control of her official Twitter account to NARA when she stepped down. When you leave tweets on Twitter, they are easily available to the public.
But Politico reports that Twitter will not allow something like this with the now banned @ realDonaldTrump account of former President Donald Trump.
"Since we have permanently banned @realDonaldTrump, the content of the account will not be displayed on Twitter as before or as is currently the case with archived administrative accounts, regardless of how NARA displays the data received," a Twitter spokesman told Politico. "Administration accounts that are archived in the service are accounts that have not violated the Twitter rules."
Twitter finally banned Donald Trump from his platform two days after the attack on the US Capitol on January 6th. Twitter concluded that his tweets that day promoted or glorified violence.
Since then, Trump has had to do without his strongest megaphone. He no longer has the ability to blow his mind directly onto the screens of millions of people every day.
It is not clear whether NARA wanted to get Twitter to restore the @ realDonaldTrump account under NARA's control or to create a copy of the account under a different name. Perhaps NARA suggested posting copies of Trump's tweets on an entirely new Twitter account. At this point, it doesn't matter as Twitter has ruled out Trump's tweets from being on its platform in any form.
Instead, NARA will post an archive of Trump's tweet on the Trump Presidential Library website, which is itself under the control of NARA. NARA says the archive will contain all of Trump's tweets, including controversial tweets that received warnings from Twitter, as well as the tweets that Trump ultimately banned.
NARA spokesman James Pritchett told Politico that the agency is "working to make the exported content available for download". It sounds like NARA might just offer the tweets as one large download instead of making each tweet individually available online – a much less practical format than putting the tweets back on Twitter.
It is not clear how important this is in practice. There is already at least one private website that hosts copies of Trump's tweets. However, there is no guarantee that independent sites like this will still be available in a decade or so, while Twitter and NARA (or a successor agency) in all likelihood will continue to be here.
I would have expected social media sites like Twitter to care more about not having Trump as an active user than removing every trace of his ancient writings from their platforms. But Twitter apparently has a strong feel for Trump and his tweets.
And Facebook is obviously the same. Last week the company deleted an interview between Trump and his daughter-in-law, Lara Trump, warning that content published "in the voice of Donald Trump" was undesirable.