Silence of the Tweets in Turkey

So, who is source of the governmental leak in Turkey? Clearly a representative who has reasonable knowledge of Twitter – enough knowledge to publish secret recordings that could damage the government’s reputation ahead of local elections.” 

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According to an article by Kevin Rawlinson on theguardian.com, Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan had been threatening the countrywide shutdown of both Facebook and YouTube when the threat of a leak was first revealed. Once Erodogan discovered that Twitter had the capacity for mobile updates, he shut down the site for all users in Turkey. A government shutdown did not, however, stop users from expressing their feelings on said shutdown; “Turkish Internet users were quick to come up with their own ways circumvent the block. The hashtag #TwitterisblockedinTurkey quickly moved among the top trending globally.” Rawlinson then compares the government in Turkey to that of North Korea or Iran – countries that may in the past be more likely to block any sites. 

Do you think that users are savvy enough to “circumvent the block?” Is Twitter going to be the new up and coming protest format – are the days of picketing and carrying signs in the streets gone? Are users in Turkey perhaps not as savvy as users native to a country where a block would not take place – i.e. America? The 2012 Presidential Debates were live-tweeted by millions of users (no source necessary as I watched the live tweets take place). In a country like Turkey, or North Korea, perhaps such live-tweeting would not be allowed. What does the leak mean for the Turkish government, and for Erodogan? 

 

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One thought on “Silence of the Tweets in Turkey

  1. I believe that the days of picketing and carrying signs are gone for our generation. I believe that older generations, who do not use social media as much, do not fully comprehend the impact of social media and therefore may utilize the old method instead.
    Users will always evolve and figure out ways to get around a block. I think that the Turkey incident is just one example of this. I think that if hte US tried to shutdown a sight, there would be an immediate uproar on social media publicizing the fact and questioning the government.
    Although I believe that not all activities of hte govnerment should be published to the public, I do believe in a certain amount of transparancy. I think that Turkey will continue to be under scruteny for its actions and trying to limit what the people see. However, if people are publishing items that impact national security, then the public should also be understanding that the information should not be posted to social media.

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