The timestamp on Leslie Jones’ most recent – and possibly last – tweet was just past 10 p.m. She had reached her limit.
Jones had just spent 12 hours on Monday calling out her harassers on Twitter – sometimes she’d reply, other times she’d take screenshots of their hate-filled comments and share them with her followers. The “Ghostbusters” star was fighting back.
Her last tweet was filled with disappointment: “I leave Twitter tonight with tears and a very sad heart. All this cause I did a movie. You can hate the movie but the s–t I got today…wrong.”
It’s unclear if Jones is gone from Twitter for good. What we do know is that her account is still active and her representative is mum. Late Tuesday, Twitter permanently removed Milo Yiannopoulos from its platform. The editor at conservative website Breitbart was seen as an instigator of the online attacks on Jones.
But the issue is a live one – and the school yard that is social media continues to prove that invisible bullies have very real effects on their targets, even when they’re famous.
Just before Jones’ retweetstorm made news, in the TV corner of the Twitter universe, fans of ABC’s “Once Upon a Time” were crushed to learn actor Josh Dallas, who frequently used #CharmAttack to communicate with his passionate and vocal fans, deleted his account and, according to a representative, has no plans to return. He had reportedly received online harassment.
A URL that once led to his page now leads to the familiar blue background that indicates you’ve found a ghost of Twitter’s past.
This approach to leaving the platform is the most extreme, but it is rarer than you might imagine.
“Lost” creator Damon Lindelof made a similar exit from Twitter in 2013 after constant criticism about his show’s polarizing ending. British actor Stephen Fry departed earlier this year after a joke at the British Academy Film Awards earned him backlash, and he has yet to return.
More often than not, however, celebrities who quit Twitter tend to come back.
Alec Baldwin deleted his account three years ago after directing angry tweets toward a British journalist. He eventually returned to the platform, tweeting primarily from the handle dedicated to his charitable foundation.
Body shaming led Iggy Azalea to take some “time away” from social media. For a while, she put the entire operation into the hands of her management team.
And “Great British Bake Off” star Sue Perkins, once the subject of ultimately false rumors about her taking over for Jeremy Clarkson as host of “Top Gear,” went on a four-month Twitter cleanse that ended the way most cleanses do – with a subtle return to normalcy.
Of course, Twitter is a big tent. Amid the haters, there is also humanity. And celebrity victims of trolls who put Twitter aside are usually greeted with support.
In Jones’ case, she’s been flooded with it.
Amy Schumer, a woman who once wished her trolls “good morning” in an Instagram caption, is among the well wishers. According to a tweet, Schumer remains confident that Jones will “be back with a vengeance.”
“I can’t wait for you to see what she is capable of,” she wrote. Subtext: Haters, move along.