Twitter removes 30,000 Chinese, Russian & Turkish accounts linked to gov’t propaganda | ABC News
Twitter has blocked thousands of accounts from China, Turkey and Russia
Twitter has announced the closure of over 170,000 accounts associated with the Chinese government. According to experts, this is due to the fight against the spread of false information around the protests in Hong Kong, Covid-19 and other topics..
The company said the blocked pages were spreading geopolitical narratives favorable to the Chinese Communist Party and were removed for violating the platform’s policies..
Twitter officially blocked in China, although many people in the country can access it using VPN tools.
Rene Diresta, a research manager at Stanford Internet Observatory, who also analyzed private accounts, noted that many of them were only created at the end of January.
Twitter said it had identified 23,750 accounts actively posting Beijing-friendly content. Another 150 thousand accounts were involved in the distribution of this content in the media space.
According to Stanford research, propaganda posts were retweeted about 348,608 times.
Twitter Shuts Down Thousands Of “State-Linked” Accounts Of China, Russia And Turkey
It is worth noting that many of the accounts were quickly identified and therefore had few subscribers and low engagement..
Chinese Foreign Ministry on Friday questioned the actions of representatives of the social network.
«If Twitter employees really want to do something useful, they should pay attention to those accounts that are attacking and vilifying China in a coordinated manner. Our country is the biggest victim of disinformation», – said Hua chunying, ministry representative.
This is not the first such action taken by Twitter.. In August 2019, the company removed about 1,000 accounts that had made organized and concrete attempts to foment political strife in Hong Kong..
The company also announced that it has blocked accounts linked to Russia and Turkey. More than a thousand pages actively promoting the party fell under the ban «United Russia».
Turkey restricts access to 7,340 accounts posting content favorable to the Turkish President’s party Recep Tayyip Erdogan.