FLASH! As of about 4:30 PDT, Wednesday, July 31, 2012, the @WeAreAustralia and @hellofrmSG projects are now back online. See @RotationCurator’s tweets:
So, thank you Twitter and Dick Costolo, very much!
We’d still like to know what happened and why, so this sort of thing doesn’t happen again to other Rotation Curation projects. We think we know how this happened; we think one or more antisocial individuals submitted bogus spam reports and triggered Twitter’s automatic spam suspension robot.
With the runaway success of the Rotation Curation Movement, it is unconscionable that the voice of an entire country, city, or community can be silenced for a week or more by a maladjusted individual in a matter of a fraction of a second.
THIS NEEDS TO BE FIXED TWITTER! It is imperative that you initiate a protocol of human investigation whenever a bona fide Rotation Curation account is accused of spamming.
THANK YOU EVERYONE WHO SIGNED THE PETITION. THIS WAS THE
FIRST SECOND CASE (and last, we hope) OF ROTATION CURATION CENSORSHIP AND, AS A RESULT, THE FIRST SECOND DEMONSTRATION OF ROTATION CURATION POWER.
THE DEMONSTRATION AT TWITTER HQ IS CALLED OFF!
The following will be left in place for a few days for residual reference and then it will be archived.
Twitter is well known and widely respected as a company for its adherence to the principals of freedom of expression and free speech.
On January 28, 2011, Twitter wrote a post on its blog entitled The Tweets Must Flow:
Our goal is to instantly connect people everywhere to what is most meaningful to them. For this to happen, freedom of expression is essential. Some Tweets may facilitate positive change in a repressed country, some make us laugh, some make us think, some downright anger a vast majority of users. We don’t always agree with the things people choose to tweet, but we keep the information flowing irrespective of any view we may have about the content.
The open exchange of information can have a positive global impact. This is both a practical and ethical belief. On a practical level, we simply cannot review all one hundred million-plus Tweets created and subsequently delivered every day. From an ethical perspective, almost every country in the world agrees that freedom of expression is a human right. Many countries also agree that freedom of expression carries with it responsibilities and has limits.
The entire basis of the #RotationCuration movement is predicated on Twitter resolutely upholding these freedom of expression ideals.
On June 3, 2012, however, with no warning and no explanation, Twitter suspended the @IAm_Pakistan account. On June 11, after vociferous protest from #RotationCuration followers, the @IAm_Pakistan account was restored.
Now, however, as of July 24, both @WeAreAustralia and @hellofrmSG (Singapore) have similarly been suspended, with no explanation whatsoever from Twitter.
According to the Electronic Frontier Foundation, January 27, 2012, in What Does Twitter’s Country-by-Country Takedown System Mean for Freedom of Expression?, Twitter will only suppress content for IP addresses within a specific country when asked to do so by the specific country and only for legal reasons local to that country. Beyond this, “Twitter is taking two additional steps to ensure that users know that the censorship has happened. First, they are giving users notice when they seek that content. Second, they are sending the notices they receive to the Chilling Effects Project, which publishes the orders, creating an archive.”
But in the case of @WeAreAustralia and @hellofrmSG (as with @IAm_Pakistan) there has been no notice and there has been nothing posted to the Chilling Effects Project database.
@WeAreAustralia and @hellofrmSG are valued members of the #RotationCuration movement and should not have to worry about being shut down due to bogus spam reports. Most egregiously, the curator for @hellofrmSG was in the middle of a week of reporting on his experience living with HIV when he was cut off. Twitter, most certainly, did not cut off @hellofrmSG due to this content, but it is very likely that a malicious person didn’t like the content and submitted a false spam report.
As the #RotationCuration movement continues to grow in scope and significance, there are likely to be more and more instances where malevolent individuals will seek to shut down legitimate #RotationCuration accounts simply by flagging them as spam. This form of harassment is operationally enabled by Twitter’s policy of swiftly shutting down spam accounts. Twitter needs to initiate a human oversight protocol for shutting down bona fide #RotationCuration accounts for alleged spamming activity — no #RotationCuration account should be shut down automatically without a Twitter employee investigating the spam allegation and agreeing that the account is truly engaged in spamming behavior.
If you agree that #RotationCuration is an important new evolution in global communications, cultural exchange, and world understanding, only made possible by unfettered access to the Twitter platform, please sign the petition below.
This petition will have a much better chance of success if it is signed by many people. Please, if you are willing to sign it, take it upon yourself to find two other people to sign it also — friends, family, Facebook contacts, etc. And please make sure they will actually sign it, don’t just send it to them and let it go at that. Thank you so much!
= = = = = = = = = Free @WeAreAustralia and @hellofrmSG Petition = = = = = = = = =
TWITTER, we, the undersigned, respectfully but urgently demand
that you uphold your policy of freedom of expression
and reinstate the @WeAreAustralia and @hellofrmSG
#RotationCuration accounts immediately.
We further request that you initiate a protocol
of human oversight when a bona fide
#RotationCuration account is reported for
spamming behavior so that this sort of
harassment can be prevented in the future.
If Twitter does not reinstate @WeAreAustralia and @hellofrmSG,
or provide a credible reason for its inaction, with my signature below,
I support a public demonstration outside the Twitter Headquarters offices
(1355 Market Street Street, San Francisco) on Wednesday, August 1 at noon.
Whether or not I am able to be physically present at the demonstration,
I understand that my name will be included in a printout of this petition
and delivered to the Twitter offices at the culmination of the demonstration.
|we are russia||Russia||@we_r_russia|
|Karen R Yap||Malaysia||@krybabe|
|Deirdre McGaffey||United States||@deirdrebeth|
|Joshua Joy||Puerto Rico||@jjoybrindle|
|Yia Hua Jern||Malaysia||@huajern|
|Ahmad Fazley Ahmad Suhaimi||Malaysia||@fazleysuhaimi|