14 Jan 2021

Twitter's crackdown concerns free speech advocates

From Morning Report, 8:16 am on 14 January 2021

Proponents of free speech are concerned at Twitter's capricious suspension of tens of thousands of accounts in recent days, which has now reached New Zealand.

They say many of these accounts were allowed to flourish for years, and the swift change in approach has not been fairly applied.

But Twitter says: "Given the violent events in Washington, DC, and increased risk of harm, we began permanently suspending thousands of accounts that were primarily dedicated to sharing QAnon content."

Last night, the former National Party leader, Simon Bridges, tweeted: "The suspension of New Zealand Twitter accounts is an overreaction" and said pushing views underground is more dangerous than letting them be out in the open.

Te Aniwa Hurihanganui is joined by the Chairperson at the New Zealand Council for Civil Liberties, Thomas Beagle.