Not notable enough? UN torture rapporteur who defended Assange gets rejected by Twitter for verification
“Seriously?” Melzer tweeted on Wednesday, posting a screenshot of the message he received from Twitter’s Verification service saying that “the evidence provided did not meet our criteria for notability.”
“I am an official international mandate holder of [UN special procedures experts] appointed by the UN Human Rights Council, with an official webpage @UNHumanRights & countless publications & public appearances. How (on earth) does that ‘not meet your criteria for notability’?” he said.
Dear @twitter & @verified: Seriously?I am an official international mandate holder of @UN_SPExperts appointed by @UN_HRC, with an official webpage @UNHumanRights & countless publications & public appearances. How (on earth) does that «not meet your criteria for notability»? pic.twitter.com/sWGRzmGY1D— Nils Melzer (@NilsMelzer) August 18, 2021
One of the screenshots Melzer provided was of his UN biography page, which lists his extensive employment history, publications, and notable UN work. The Swiss scholar has served as the UN special rapporteur on torture and other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment since November 2016.
As such, he has repeatedly spoken out about the illegal imprisonment of Assange, the WikiLeaks co-founder who spent years trapped in the Ecuadorian Embassy in the UK. After being stripped of his asylum and dragged out of the embassy in April 2019, Assange was sent to Belmarsh Prison outside London, where he has been held in de facto solitary confinement ever since, pending US demands to have him extradited on spurious “hacking” charges.Also on rt.com UN special rapporteur on torture requests info after video shows German police officer throwing elderly woman to ground
Melzer has also sought to protect the human rights of peaceful protesters, such as an elderly German woman whom a viral video showed being brutalized by police in Berlin, during an anti-lockdown protest earlier this month.
None of this seemed to matter to Twitter, which told Melzer in what appeared to be a form letter that they “could not reliably verify that the account associated with the request is a notable person, organization, or brand.” The San Francisco-based platform urged him to try again in 30 days.
Last week, however, Twitter announced it was pausing the verification process to “make improvements to the application and review process,” so they can “get things right.”
We’ve temporarily hit pause on rolling out access to apply for Verification so we can make improvements to the application and review process.For those who have been waiting, we know this may be disappointing. We want to get things right, and appreciate your patience.— Twitter Verified (@verified) August 13, 2021
Why Melzer received a form letter questioning his ‘notability’ if this pause has been in effect since August 13, or why he was advised to try again before the verification resumes, remains unclear at this time.
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