“These accounts were following the exact same people that were tweeting about Palestine, but from France or Francophone accounts that work on Palestine,” Razek said of her new followers. The advocacy director of Rābet, the Palestine Institute for Public Diplomacy’s digital platform, became wary of the issue after Abier Khateb, a grants manager at Open Society Foundations, reported mass followings as well. Razek told MintPress News that she began individually reporting each account as fake but kept her own account open — lest she let the alleged bots win. But after a few days, Razek made her profile private. At the peak of the mass following, Razek had accumulated 400 fake followers.
Elon Musk successfully won his bid to purchase Twitter on April 25th just days after a rally in New York City chanted “Azov” to express support for Ukraine. While these events appear unrelated on the surface, they represent key examples of the road to hell paved by U.S. imperialism’s dominant ideology: liberalism. Liberalism is often viewed as the most progressive political ideology of the prevailing social order in the West. In actuality, liberalism is the driving ideological force of capitalist and imperialist expansionism. Liberal ideology is characterized by the fetishization of racism, individualism, and the political preconditions necessary for the expansion of capitalism. Once a kick-starter for the explosive growth of capital, liberalism has devolved into an ideology that defends the rule of the rich at any and all cost.
At approximately 5 am PST on November 29th, I awoke to an almost uninterrupted buzz of text messages from my cell phone. I turned to my nightstand, put my glasses on and quickly learned through concerned friends that my Twitter account had been taken down. Naturally, I logged on to Twitter. From one account to the next, including my "burners", I received an error message indicating that each account had been suspended. I was given no explanation. How could Twitter take down all my accounts without any explanation? What did I do to deserve such an honor? It didn't take long for me to discover that I wasn't alone. Apparently, Twitter had suspended about a dozen other accounts from the Horn of Africa and its diaspora that had been associated with the nascent #NoMore movement.
Social media giant Twitter took the step of suspending the official account of MintPress News on Saturday. Without warning, the nine-year-old account with 64,000 followers was abruptly labeled as “fake” or “spam” and restricted. This move is becoming a frequent occurrence for alternative media, especially those that openly challenge U.S. power globally. Immediately preceding the ban, MintPress had been sharing stories about Israeli government crimes against Palestinians, the Saudi-led onslaught in Yemen (both funded and supported by Washington), and about activists challenging chemical giant Monsanto’s latest plans. However, MintPess correspondent Ollie Vargas, stationed in Bolivia and covering the coup and other events there, had another theory on the suspension.
A Twitter account that claimed to represent a national antifa organization and that urged protesters to loot "white" neighborhoods was actually run by white nationalist group Identity Evropa, according to a Twitter spokesperson. The account, which posted under the handle "@ANTIFA_US," falsely aligned itself with ongoing Black Lives Matter protests nationwide. One tweet that called for protesters to "move into residential areas" and "take what's ours" was retweeted hundreds of times as of Sunday night. The account was removed Monday for breaking Twitter's rules against platform manipulation, spam, and inciting violence, NBC News first reported.
This is Barrett Brown. I’m a longtime journalist and the recipient of the National Magazine Award for commentary, the New York Press Club award for humor, the Folio award for best local coverage, and other such awards in recognition of my journalism and opinion writing. I’m also the author of several books, including memoirs that will be released from Farrar, Straus, and Giroux in April of next year. And I now hold the record in permanent suspensions from Twitter, as you can see from the articles linked below. In fact, I held it two permanent suspensions ago.
A recent investigation from independent news outlet Middle East Eye (9/30/19) uncovered that a senior Twitter executive is, in fact, an officer in the British Army’s 77th Brigade, a unit dedicated to psychological operations (psyops), propaganda and online warfare. Gordon MacMillan, who joined the social media company in 2013, is its head of editorial for the Middle East and North Africa. While both Twitter and the British Army attempted to distance themselves from the implications of the report, it is unclear why MacMillan would have this role if not to manipulate and propagandize the public.
Twitter has continued to demonstrate how Big Tech corporations in Silicon Valley operate as arms of the American national security state. On August 19, the social media giant announced that is relying on numerous organizations funded by the US government and European allies to help it police foreign state media on its platform. Among the Twitter allies is Freedom House, a notorious right-wing lobby group almost entirely bankrolled by Washington that is heavily invested in regime-change operations against foreign adversaries.
After a week of vocal protests from online supporters of Julian Assange, Twitter has reversed its unjust removal of the prominent pro-Assange activism account @Unity4J. After the account was suspended without any explanation being presented to its operators, Assange supporters drew a clear line in the sand against internet censorship and began making a big noise that couldn’t be ignored. The account’s suspension drew condemnations from high-profile Assange supporters like Pink Floyd’s Roger Waters, World Socialist Website, RT and Lee Camp, as well as a sustained social media campaign by grassroots supporters which included artwork, memes, and of course relentless “tagging” of Twitter Support and Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey.
The simultaneous escalation of censorship of Julian Assange’s support base, alongside the latest wave of fact-free attacks on Assange and WikiLeaks‘, raises concern about a coordinated effort to smear Assange while silencing those who counter such dubious reporting. Consortium News was under attack on Monday, days after the premiere episode of the outlet’s live-streamed show, CN Live! The malicious attempt to shut down the website, according to the site’s web host, followed on the heels of the suspension of pro-Assange account Unity4J from Twitter.
One of the biggest Twitter accounts dedicated to circulating information and advocacy for WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange, @Unity4J, has been completely removed from the site. The operators of the account report that they have been given no reason for its removal by the Twitter staff, and have received no response to their appeals. Any Assange supporter active on Twitter will be familiar with the Unity4J account, which originated to help boost the wildly successful Unity4J online vigils in which well-known Assange defenders would appear to speak out against his persecution. As of this writing, the account has been gone for a day and a half.
Christine Assange, the mother of WikiLeaks founder and publisher Julian Assange, had her Twitter account restored more than 24 hours after it was abruptly restricted by the social media company. Hundreds of tweets were sent to the San Francisco-based company by supporters demanding that she regain access to her account. Ms. Assange tweeted at 10:33 p.m. U.S. Eastern time on Wednesday: “Back on deck! Many thanks to everyone contacting @Twitter on my behalf. Thanks to @Twitter for responding with a reconnect.”