Gross: Twitter to censor content per government request, goodbye freedom of speech!

Photo via
Photo via

Ugh. Really, Twitter?

In a statement released through Twitter’s company blog, they explain their motives concerning censorship in countries who request it:

“As we continue to grow internationally, we will enter countries that have different ideas about the contours of freedom of expression. Some differ so much from our ideas that we will not be able to exist there. Others are similar but, for historical or cultural reasons, restrict certain types of content, such as France or Germany, which ban pro-Nazi content.

…Starting today, we give ourselves the ability to reactively withhold content from users in a specific country while keeping it available in the rest of the world.”

What are they afraid of? Us? Photo via
What are they afraid of? Us? Photo via

That’s disturbing. Especially seeing as Twitter and Facebook were huge catalysts in the uprisings and subsequent revolutions in the Middle East and South America over the past year.

Twitter only gives famously bad examples of group communication like Nazis, but who’s to stop them from censoring socialist or populist uprisings against, say, a massive opposition to big governments and big corporations? (Hello, Occupy Movement!)

The legality of this political- I mean company- move is not the question: Twitter can do whatever they want with their company and their product. Someday we will have a social network that is neither Facebook nor Twitter that will be run by people who have an actual grasp of this idea behind freedom.

Until that day, all this current censorship talk, first coming from the US government with SOPA and PIPA and now through Twitter, makes one start to wonder: What are they so afraid of?


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