For the first time in it’s history the popular social website Twitter censored it’s first account.
The website announced it’s capabilities to withhold content last January and have put it to use early this morning. It blocked the account of a German neo-Nazi group that German police claim is a “criminal organization”. This is the first time the company has ever censored a user’s account permanently.
The group in question is named Besseres Hannover and the ban currently only applies in Germany. The account is still viewable in other countries including the United States. Upon translation the tweets sent out by the group appear to be tame at best. The group’s webpage has also been suspended or removed.
When Twitter announced their ability to censor Tweets, they did promise to disclose the information whenever this ability was utilized. Thus far they’ve kept this promise, as Twitter’s general consul, Alex Macgillivray tweeted the news of the censorship this morning.
“We announced the ability to withhold content back in Jan. We’re using it now for the first time re: a group deemed illegal by the German police”
Twitter has also posted the request they received from German police to ban the group.
Do you think the censorship of an illegal group marks the beginning of free speech oppression on Twitter? Or Was it totally appropriate to ban the hate group?