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21 Feb, 2018 09:58

‘Mass censorship’ v ‘bot purge’: Twitterati split over alleged crackdown on conservative voices

‘Mass censorship’ v ‘bot purge’: Twitterati split over alleged crackdown on conservative voices

Conservative Twitter users across the platform are, metaphorically at least, setting their hair on fire amid claims their accounts were locked in a reported “purge” of right-wing voices.

The move, which has yet to be confirmed by Twitter has nonetheless been labelled an attempt at “mass censorship” by critics, is thought to be a bid to rid the platform of automated accounts – or ‘bots’ – set up to artificially amplify conservative campaigns online.

Some of the more rabid elements of conservative Twitter have reacted with incredulity, claiming they have lost hundreds of followers who, like them, have been targeted for their cutting-edge commentary and off-beat political polemics.  

Others on the left have likened the controversy to other infamous faux outrages of the past, such as the famously non-existent Bowling Green massacre – once falsely touted by the White House’s Kellyanne Conway.

Much like #ReleaseTheMemo, another recent aberration from the social ether, #TwitterLockout has spread like wildfire, racking up around 87,000 tweets and trending worldwide since the so-called purge began.The phenomenon comes amid heightened fears of Russian influence on US elections. For some Twitter users the Russian influence is clear.

With no official comment from Twitter on what, if anything, is actually happening, The Twitterati are showing no signs of dropping #TwitterLockout

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