Yesterday we talked about Twitter’s hijinks. Today Twitter attempts to explain it away. The result? Something completely unplanned.
Yesterday something happened on Twitter that should surprise no one. On the opening weekend of the new movie “Unplanned”, Twitter banned the official, account. The movie is based on a true story of a Planned Parenthood clinic director who became a pro-life activist. In other words, it’s a movie which is definitely on the conservative side of a very divisive political argument. The fact that the official movie account remains unverified on Twitter should be a tip-off of how Twitter views the movie, however taking away the movie’s ability to market on it’s opening day takes it to a new level.
After the banning seemed to be fixed, users discovered that they could not follow the account. People that attempted to follow the account, or like posts, found their actions undone. The situation was reproducible throughout most of the day yesterday.
Now it’s time for Twitter to explain. Again.
As we have seen time and time again when non-liberal voices have been silenced on social networks, the answer is that it was a mistake. “When an account violates the Twitter Rules, the system looks for linked accounts to mitigate things like ban evasion,” said a spokeswoman to The Daily Caller. “In this case, the account was mistakenly caught in our automated systems for ban evasion.” The spokesperson went on to say that the issue that people had being unable to follow the account or amplify it’s presence was just part of the account needing time to “fully replenish” after reinstatement.
The spokeswoman went on to state “We enforce our rules dispassionately and do not engage in so-called shadow banning.” Dispassionately? What an unbelievable statement. Again, the official movie account remains unverified. The account was banned, supposedly caught up in an automated system utilized to evade ban evasion. Meaning that the system believed that the account was another account created after another was banned, and yet we don’t know what other account they may be pointing to. And the world watched as the weekend the movie was released, that this “mistake” silenced the promotional voice of the movie.
What is also unbelievable, is that these constant “mistakes” made by Twitter, only affect conservative accounts.
If this “mistake” was purposeful, as many believe it was, it had a very Unplanned result. Over the last 24 hours, the pro-life account’s follower count has dwarfed the official account of Planned Parenthood. At the time of this writing, @UnplannedMovie currently has 312k followers, while the official (and verified) @PPFA account sits at 258k followers.
If this was truly a mistake, Jack Dorsey could easily do something to make up for the mistake. Dorsey could rush to verify the account. He could also promote the accounts tweets and perhaps have a moment or two as Twitter recently did for Planned Parenthood when the organization recently became a topic of political discussion over the defunding of the political organization.
But we know that won’t happen.