Is Twitter Blocking Pro-Prop 8 Tweets From the Perry Trial?

Is Twitter censoring the #Prop8 posts from supporters of the California measure? That’s the claim being made by the Alliance Defense Fund, the fringe group that’s partnered with ProtectMarriage.com to defend Prop 8 in Perry. Tweets from accounts including @AllianceDefense @ADFmedia @AllianceAlert @ProtectMarriage aren’t showing up in Twitter’s search results, they claim, meaning live coverage like ours are filtering the anti-gay 140-character notes. And now there are lawyers involved!

On Wednesday, counsel for Alliance Defense contacted Twitter — which, like so many tech start-ups, is based in San Francisco, where Perry is being tried — to demand the censorship stop. And whether there was real censorship, or Twitter gave in, it appears some of tweets are back in Twitter’s search results, as this query shows. (Joe Eskenazi finds some accounts remained censored.)

Well maybe that explains why NOM’s Maggie Gallagher is forced to point to live coverage of the Perry trial … being produced by Prop 8 opponents.

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  • John from England(used to be just John but there are other John's)


    The internet is so left….

    Poor NOM.

  • B

    Twitter has a search tip that says putting an ‘@’ before a user name means the search is for replies to that user or to messages that reference that user.

    If you manage to create a user name with an ‘@’ in it, I can see how there might be problems, with any “censoring” being due to buggy software (they shouldn’t allow user names starting with an ‘@’ because Twitter gives ‘@’ a special meaning). If you search for messages from a user @AllianceAlert Twitter will look for replies to messages from “AllianceAlert” or messages that refer to the user “AllianceAlert”, but if everyone ignores AllianceAlert, the search result will be empty. So the “censoring” may simply be due to the fundies failing to RTFM! Then if AllianceAlert posts a reply to AllianceAlert’s own message, something will show up in a search for @AllianceAlert, but that will happen a bit later (i.e., after AllianceAlert has seen a problem to complain about and posted a reply as a result).

    In other words, the pro-prop-8 people may simply have angered the “software god”, who has a lot more clout than “God” when it comes to getting messages dropped on the floor and ignoring ill-formed queries. (Sorry, but you have to evoke deities to get the idea across to these people – its just a question of explaining it in a way that will be understood by a particular audience.)

    So my vote is that the problem is user stupidity, not Twitter censoring.

  • YellowRanger

    And even if they were, there’s shit-all the bigots could do about it. Sites like Twitter/Facebook/Xanga can censor whatever they please…

  • Lukas P.

    Could it be that Jesus is doing the censoring?

    Go onto most any Pro-Prop 8 board, express your opinions, and you’ll find that all posts are moderated. Even if in your comment you claim to support it and dare to question whether the tactics being used to defend it are the most effective, your post will vanish into the ether.

  • GirlyQ


    Ding ding ding! We have a winner. Private company, if they want to censor my Tweets about my cats, Prop 8, or Tila Tequila, they can.

  • ChrisM

    While this would be a little frustrating if true (not saying it is or isn’t), I fail to see the relevance. Don’t these dumbasses realize that it doesn’t matter what individuals think of Prop 8 anymore? It’s bad enough that it ever mattered in the first place. It’s up to the Courts now, a slight improvement, and hopefully they will do the right thing.

  • romeo

    Aren’t these the guys who fought like hell to keep live cameras out of the court room so they wouldn’t look so bad? And got their stooges on the Supreme Court to go along. WTF !

  • dontblamemeivotedforhillary

    Twitter is nick-named Tweaker… Just sayin’

Comments are closed.