Twitter suspended dozens of accounts critical of the Egyptian president without cause during rare anti-government demonstrations last month, according to new research.
Wael Eskandar, an Egyptian researcher specializing in digital rights, found that Twitter had suspended accounts that tweeted words in Arabic like “whore” and “ass-kisser.”
Is it really any surprise that Twitter is siding with violent, totalitarian regimes? I mean, this is the same company that refuses to ban nazis and white supremacists because that would overlap with Republican politicians.
De-platforming: Everyone has an opinion on it and every social network has it’s own vague policy on who to de-platform, which applies using a healthy dose of gut feeling and moment’s whim.
Don’t go near there Thom, it’s madness all the way down…
None of these things that are happening now are really surprising, or at least they shouldn’t be. We’re all really stupid for allowing ourselves to become so dependent on privately controlled data silos. For years (decades even) I’ve been drumming on about why this transition from a federated internet to privately controlled networks run by a handful of all-powerful corporations is dangerous to civil rights & freedoms. It’s to the point where individuals like myself face the ultimatum of either giving up on liberties and succumb to corporate control, or give up on being able to reach friends online.
It didn’t have to be this way, and there was even a point when peer to peer seemed to be the future (aka the napster years). Peer to peer had massive resource, cost, scalability, etc advantages. For better or worse though many of the companies behind peer to peer technology were sued into oblivion over data exchanged by users. Companies found they could overcome the inefficiencies inherent in centralized services by greatly expanding the use of advertising and the rest is history.
This was completely foreseeable and we did not care enough to act. Whether it’s the walled gardens of apple, or the private networks of twitter and facebook etc…I would be totally sympathetic to those who’s voices have been smote by the corporations, however I have to confess that I’m not anymore. It’s our own damned fault for allowing these profit seeking corporations to control our technology and data. We’re becoming hypocrites for criticizing these companies while continuing to be willing customers. Sure it’s convenient to blame the corporations after the fact, but I am so disappointed in us for rolling over and taking it every time a corporation does something that goes against our freedoms. That’s the thing about not giving a crap or taking preventative measures when someone else is being oppressed, when your turn comes up it’s too damn late.
Not to put too fine a point on it Thom, but I see your twitter account is still very active and you are effectively promoting it’s usage.
Are you actually going to do anything about your gripe or are you going to begrudgingly take it? To be honest I don’t expect you to do anything about it, but surely you can see how this behavior, multiplied throughout the population at large, enables corporations to keep control over us. It’s with deep sorrow that I say this, but if we’re not willing to put even the slightest effort in standing up for what we claim to believe in, then its hard to make the case that we deserve better than what we have.
Well… all tech companies will side with power and money, especially the ones in USA.
This happened during WW2 on all countries with authoritarian or fascist governments. It’s up to the people working for those companies to be whistle blowers or straight up quit when the time comes. That’s hard in USA where the economy is horrible and there’s no social safety net.
“Is it really any surprise that Twitter is siding with violent, totalitarian regimes?”
Yes, actually it is. Twitter has made a name for themselves by supporting dissidents in several occasions, which collectively got named the “Twitter Revolution” (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Twitter_Revolution). They were also very against censorship, in the US and abroad and were constantly blocked as result by Egypt, China, Turkey, Iran and so on.
In this light, Twitter recent capitulation to the Egypt government is surprising.
“I mean, this is the same company that refuses to ban nazis and white supremacists because that would overlap with Republican politicians.”
This is totally baffling. Speech is speech, you may not agree with it, but it still is speech. Violating someone’s freedom of speech is the same in all areas and all countries.
Let me put it this way, you are saying that it isn’t surprising Twitter banned someone because in another case they refused to ban someone.