President Obama sent his inaugural Twitter post from the Oval Office on Monday, writes The New York Times.
The White House heralded the event with fanfare, and displayed a photograph of him perched on his desk tapping out his message on an iPhone.
The account is @POTUS — named for the in-house acronym derived from “President Of The United States.”
A White House aide wrote that it would “serve as a new way for President Obama to engage directly with the American people, with tweets coming exclusively from him.”
According to The New York Times, however, it took only a few minutes for Mr. Obama’s account to attract racist, hate-filled posts and replies.
“They addressed him with racial slurs and called him a monkey,” wrote the Times.
One post had an image of the president with his neck in a noose.
Racial hostility toward the nation’s first black president has long been expressed in stark terms on the Internet, where conspiracy theories thrive and prejudices find ready outlets, writes The New York Times.
“But the racist Twitter posts are different because now that Mr. Obama has his own account, the slurs are addressed directly to him, for all to see,” writes the Times.
(Updated article to add link)