Users around the world are distraught over the decions by Twitter to block specific content on a country-by-country basis, and say they will have a Twitter Blackout on January 28th
As we reported last night, Twitter announced yesterday that it may block specific content on a country-by-country basis if required. The reaction to the announcement has led to millions of tweets demonstrating their disgust at the #TwitterCensored news. If Twitter is censored in repressive countries like Russia, China and parts of the Middle East, the flow of information from these countries about the ever-changing news events will be blocked. Who is to say what is censored and what is not? If Syria bans tweets that involve the words government and Assad, or any tweets that demonstrate regime practices on civilians, who will know that these atrocities are taking place?
Now some Twitter followers are taking action for the decision to censor tweets by staging a Twitter Blackout tomorrow (known on the Twittersphere as #TwitterBlackout) in which they will not tweet the whole day.
Some analysts have warned that any censorship will eventually lead to Twitter users turning to other social networking platforms. Will Twitter lose its status as a vibrant source for breaking news? Will we see news organisations regain the title of being the traditional source for breaking news before the Twittersphere, a feature that Twitter has become renowned for?
Whatever censorship brings, a deeper look into Twitter's decision must be taken. Are they under pressure from investors? It wasn't long ago a rich Saudi Prince invested around $300 million dollars into Twitter, labelled as a "strategic stake", representing a 3% stake in the company. Prince Walid bin Talal, and his company Kingdom Holding, released a statement saying that the stake was part of a strategy to invest into a company with 'high-growth..with a global impact'. You can bet Twitter's decision to censor has definitely made a global impact.