From Tahrir Square to the streets of Tehran to LGBT activists in Uganda who spoke out against the “Kill the Gays” bill, Twitter has been a way for people to stand up against dictatorships, discrimination and those who do not defend human rights.
Now imagine if Twitter took that ability away, silencing hundreds of thousands of people who need to communicate to the outside world?
Twitter has announced that it will begin to censor tweets in some countries based on national laws. The Twitter blog says that “As we continue to grow internationally, we are going into countries that have different ideas about the limits of freedom of expression."
This is a very dangerous step in the wrong direction. In 2011, people around the world used Twitter to speak out and organise against authoritarian regimes and it should continue to be a platform that strongly supports freedom of expression across borders.
That’s why we've (TIGRO -- The International Gay Rights Organization) started a petition on Change.org. We want Twitter to publish an exact list of the laws it will be complying with and to publicly state that they will never agree to censor Tweets on the basis of discriminatory or non-democratic laws.
In Russia the promotion of Homosexuality is totally illegal and LGBT activists are arrested on a regular basis. The International Gay Rights Organisation (TIGRO) is a group campaigning for LGBT rights worldwide. Russia and many other countries would love to block TIGRO’s Twitter feed which would mean we wouldn’t be able to support people at risk of torture, draconian prison sentences or even the death penalty. Twitter allows organisations like ours to communicate with extremely vulnerable people. Twitter’s new policy puts our ability to do this in jeopardy.
Freedom of expression is regulated by the international law of human rights, and should not be different for each country. Sign this petition calling on Twitter to continue to defend freedom of expression - regardless of location.
It's Tweets of yours like these which could be blocked in selected Countries
Please sign this petition and tell twitter not to censor your tweets
Tigro started this petition with a single signature, and now has 4,889 supporters. Start a petition today to change something you care about.