Twitter announces new country-by-country censorship.
Last week Twitter announced that it can now block certain tweets from appearing in a country if asked by that country’s government. On the surface this sounds horrible as Twitter has been used extensively during political uprisings.
Does this mean that Twitter is caving in to these repressive regimes? Well.. actually no. Here’s why. Prior to this announcement, countries would just go ahead and block Twitter as a whole. This is exactly what countries like Iran and China did.
Now.. Twitter can exist in those repressed countries, only blocking certain tweets if asked by the governments, but – and this is the most important part – those blocked tweets are still readable outside of the country.
This is actually a good thing as it allows the rest of the world know what is going on in a country rather than to be completely in the dark. In addition.. Twitter also showed that users can change their country in their profile and then be able to see the blocked tweets anyway… shhh… don’t tell the countries though.
So.. by offering this feature, it’s a way for Twitter to still exist in repressed countries.. .. while acting as a kind of back door to freedom of speech.
Some additional reading material regarding Twitter’s Country by Country Censorship: