Twitter has since apologized and reinstated Guy Adams’s account. Still, the fact remains that use of social media may be conditional on not speaking ill of the corporations with which the platforms are aligned. The Wall Street Journal reports:
The first social media Olympics have become a minefield for the Olympic movement—and especially for Twitter Inc., which has trumpeted its tight connection to the London Games.
The biggest brouhaha so far erupted on Monday and Tuesday, when a finger-pointing spat emerged over a journalist getting booted off Twitter after he was critical of NBC’s Olympics coverage. The journalist was reinstated on the short-messaging service Tuesday—but not before the blogosphere lit up with criticism over whether Twitter was curtailing free speech.
Twitter was forced to admit it breached the trust of its users when it apologized for suspending the account of Guy Adams, a Los Angeles correspondent for the U.K.’s Independent newspaper. Mr. Adams was suspended from Twitter on Monday after he tweeted the corporate email address of NBC’s Olympics president, Gary Zenkel, thereby allegedly breaching Twitter guidelines by posting personal information about other people without their permission. Mr. Adams had previously written articles critical of NBC’s Olympics broadcasts.
Twitter General Counsel Alex Macgillivray confirmed that Twitter personnel flagged Mr. Adams’s tweet containing Mr. Zenkel’s email to NBC and encouraged the network to report the message as a violation of Twitter’s rules.