June 14, 2020
Update: 2:08 AM, June 14 – @Gidimten‘s twitter page has been restored.
Around 9:30 PM on June 12, Twitter removed Unistoten Camp from its platform.
The reasons for the removal were not immediately clear, and Twitter Press has not responded to requests for a comment.
The only indication of what could have went wrong was the message “Twitter suspends accounts that violate the Twitter rules.”
Based on my observation of the account, the typical reasons for removal such as harassment or platform manipulation didn’t appear to have occured. Members of the community, and supporters, have raised suspicions it was due to censorship.
When a political account is suspended out of the blue, the obvious reaction is to think Twitter is censoring activists they don’t agree with. This is possible, and can’t be ruled out. However, there is no evidence this is the case, except the odd timing.
Furthermore, Jack Dorsey, the CEO of Twitter, has been vocally supportive of the Black Lives Matter movement, advocating for police reform.
It is possible that in Twitter’s attempt to curb foreign interference from countries like China, Russia, and Turkey (to name a few), this account was swept up in the mix. It’s likely this was an accident due to Twitter’s algorithms and not due to any malevolence.
You can read more about that here.
It is important to note, the Unistoten Camp on Facebook has 13 people assigned to it, 2 of which have non-Canadian ip addresses. One can only speculate as to who these other people are. It is possible that it is a marketing agency, as these agencies quite often help with causes like this.
It is unclear how the Unistoten Camp will address this issue. They have the choice of pleading with Twitter for them to reverse the suspension, or the choice of creating a new account from scratch.
It appears the movement is temporarily on pause while the coronavirus pandemic persists. However, there is still a lot of online activity, and the desire to make things “whole” has not ceased.
However, with the growing popularity of the BLM movement, this might indirectly lead to change for both the black and Indigenous lives of Canadians.
Let’s all hope for better, safer times for our marginalized and often oppressed community members and neighbours. Their voices have been ignored for much too long.
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Article by: Mark Slapinski