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Friday, 27 January 2012 13:07

Twitter starts censorship campaign

Written by Nick Farrell

 



If it is good enough for Saudi Arabia

Twitter has come up with technology to selectively block tweets on a country by country basis.

Writing in its blog, Twitter said it could "reactively withhold content from users in a specific country". Ironically Twitter's inability to do this resulted in popular uprisings in Libya and Egypt.  We suspect Syria would be dead keen to see a roll out of the software soon.

It said it was not entire censorship because the removed content would be available to the rest of the world. It seems that the move is part of Twitter trying to expand its global business and some countries are not happy to have it allowing its citizens to say what they like.

Twitter explained that its international growth meant entering countries "that have different ideas about the contours of freedom of expression", citing France or Germany which ban pro-Nazi content as examples.

"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," the company said in a blog post titled Tweets Must Flow.

However, the micro-blogging service said it had to balance local laws with free speech in the process.

The blog statement acknowledged that Twitter would not be able to operate in all countries, saying: "Some differ so much from our ideas that we will not be able to exist there."

Nick Farrell

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