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Twitter Bans Accounts Over Kashmir Tweets

Does Twitter believe in the ideal of ‘free expression for all’?

In recent weeks, several users’ accounts have been suspended or withheld for making posts about Indian action in Kashmir. The government of Pakistan identified about 200 suspended
accounts, alleging that Twitter was assisting India’s pursuit of silencing dissent in Kashmir.

In a report, Dawn News quoted Twitter as saying that it maintains impartiality when analysing posts, regardless of the poster’s political beliefs or nationality. Twitter has a content withheld tool which allows governments or authorised entities to request Twitter to censor content on a country by country basis.

A list of legal requests from an Indian ministryon Lumen (a public repository for content removal requests) shows that all of the accounts who received a reprimand belonged to Kashmiri users or those supporting the Kashmir cause.

Users posting about Kashmir have also complained of being shadow banned, whereby a user’s content is made is only discoverable to them. Even tweets by Indian users in support of Kashmir have been marked as ‘sensitive content’.

Twitter has denied it shadow banned users, and has not clarified
what it considers permissible speech.


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