Warning: You May Be Guilty of BadThink!

We received the following email from Twitter last night. Posting it here may make it more likely that Twitter will suspend our account, but that don’t confront me none — the auto-tweet from our blog quit working last year for some reason, I don’t have time to tweet manually, and Dymphna has lost interest in Twitter since it bottomed out with “shadow-banning” and all that other stuff.

And now this. What’s next in the Twitterverse?

Dear Gates of Vienna,

As part of our recent work to understand Russian-linked activities on Twitter during the 2016 U.S. presidential election, we identified and suspended a number of accounts that were potentially connected to a propaganda effort by a Russian government-linked organization known as the Internet Research Agency.

Consistent with our commitment to transparency, we are emailing you because we have reason to believe that you:

  • Were following one or more of these accounts at the time the accounts were suspended;
  • Replied to or mentioned one or more of these accounts during the election period; or
  • Retweeted, quote tweeted, or liked content from one or more of these accounts during the election period.

This is purely for your own information purposes, and is not related to a security concern for your account. We are sharing this information so that you can learn more about these accounts and the nature of the Russian propaganda effort. You can see examples of content from these suspended accounts on our blog if you’re interested.

People look to Twitter for useful, timely, and appropriate information. We are taking active steps to stop malicious accounts and Tweets from spreading, and we are determined to keep ahead of the tactics of bad actors. For example, in recent months we have developed new techniques to identify accounts manipulating our platform, have improved our process for challenging suspicious accounts, and have introduced new measures designed to identify and take action on coordinated malicious activity. In 2018, we are building on these improvements. Our blog also contains more information about these efforts.

People come to Twitter to see what’s happening in the world. We are committed to making it the best place to do that and to being transparent with the people who use and trust our platform.


37 thoughts on “Warning: You May Be Guilty of BadThink!

  1. Twitter? What is Twitter? I don’t even have an account there.
    Should I have one?…

    • I used to love Twitter. It was a way to play with words, a creative outlet I learned very early on: in the long periods of enforced silence at St. Mary’s Home, I would choose a long word and see how many smaller words I could come up with using its letters. I was a strict rule enforcer – i.e., if there was only one “t”, let’s say, I couldn’t double it (a strong temptation just to be able to up my score).

      Now I seldom go to Twits. Just doesn’t seem worth it anymore…though I do enjoy reading Matt Bracken’s tweets on other venues. He’s a great meme-maker.

      • I don’t look at twitter anymore. It was a great place to get information. Many people would post tweets that pointed me towards knowledge. But with twitter censorship in full bloom, I’d rather develop alternative sources sooner rather than later.

        And I don’t know how much information already there has been filtered.

  2. […]

    I’m feeling better all the time about never having had a presence on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, etc.

    See you on Gab.

    • No, you won’t see us on Gab.

      And you must be a new commenter here…otherwise you’d know we have a language code…check the commenting rules to see why. Or not. You’ve been apprised of one of them now, so that should be sufficient.

      • I just looked at your site’s posting rules and find myself confused. Please what is this commenter’s infraction?

        • I deleted it and left in the rest of his comment.

          We ask that commenters refrain from using scatological terminology. Which is why you’ll see readers sometimes refer to “fecal matter”. That passes the smell test, so to speak. Latinate phrases are also safe. “Gluteus maximus” is one. And in some cases, French or Italian words will pass muster.

  3. This is unreal. You’re a “Russian spy” now. Anyone who disagrees with Hillary & Co is a Russian spy. While Hillary is selling the Russians Uranium.


  4. I still can’t answer this question (whose importance may be growing as we witness the censorship moving on and on): is that a serious threat to the freedom of speech (hence a threat to our Constitution) or is it just a naive game when the left is trying to police Us the People but that would really never go anywhere?

    I had lived through the communist times in the Eastern part of Europe …we had never taken the communists seriously: they were pathetic liars and every new TV program, article in a newspaper or anything from them was – just a bad joke: have another beer and laugh it off.

    Maybe this is more serious … hell it is. This is America now – and being CENSORED?

    • Back in the mid- ’80s, a musician of my acqaintance attended a conductors’ course in Siena, Tuscany. The orchestra was from Bulgaria, and had its “minders”.

      Nevertheless, one of them told my friend this joke:

      “Why do Bulgarian secret policemen go around in threes”?

      “One to read, one to write, and one to keep an eye on the two dangerous intellectuals”.

      • Ah, yes…I call them “Russian jokes” because they were generated by the Soviet oppression. They speak to the soul, do Russian jokes.

    • Technically, at this point, it is not a Constitutional threat because Twitter, as far as I know, is a private actor. The “free speech” protection of the Constitution only applies to government action – the government can’t ban it. There are some exceptions where a private actor is acting on behalf of the government, etc., but at this point, Twitter is simply a private company being stupid. I can only see ridiculous efforts like these hurting its brand.

      • You have it exactly right. The same goes for Google and YouTube and infamous FaceAche. Private companies.

        It is also true here: we can and do delete ugly comments that don’t meet average levels of courtesy or language. Sometimes, if the comment just leads off with a slur but the rest of it is okay, I remove the offensive – often scatological – section and then approve the rest.

      • Agreed – as ridiculous and ominous those actions may be perceived (and they are, in fact), they are ones of private subjects.

        Thanks for the correction of my statement!

    • Hi, I come from an Eastern Block country as well and can swear that as early as the late 70-ies, few people even among the communist party member themselves believed the dogma (classless society, gradual disappearance of the state etc). But – you had to conform and not challenge it in public, if you wanted to “advance”. Just like so many rich Muslims don’t remember old Mo’s orders and prohibitions, when they are in the West, particularly in the Casino or on a drinking quest…but when back to the Gulf, grow beards, go for prayer regularly, mention Allah with every sentence etc.

  5. “You May Be Guilty of BadThink!”

    Well, if its only a ‘May Be’ perhaps you aren’t doing it right. Praise the Lord, pass the ammunition and up the guts with lots of smoke!…

    …O.K., hands up, I’ve just got back from a well lubricated evening at the Pub – but what the hell 👍👍👍🍺🍺🍺🍺🍺🍺🍺

  6. To misquote Winston Churchill, these attacks may not be the end of Twitter, Facebook, Google and the like but it looks like the end of the beginning of the end for them.

  7. Vitamin K2 naturally brings down bad cholesterol. Moreover, and what’s best, with time it also gradually unclogs your arteries from old cholesterol already deposited there. This means, 0 risk of heart attack or stroke, with time. A laundry list of diseases, in fact all of them, are worsened by the fact that the body doesn’t get proper blood irrigation, due to clogged veins. This means, K2 helps with them all. In order to deposit, cholesterol needs one calcium atom. K2 takes that calcium atom and deposits it… in the teeth and bones. This also improves teeth and bone health. If you already have a dangerous level of cholesterol or clogging, please use aspirin jointly with vitamin K2 for the first 2 months.

    There are two types of K2 vitamin, MK-4 and MK-7. They do slightly different things. I use them both at once. It can be found at Vitamin Shoppe. Only MK-4 passes the blood brain barrier. Only MK-7 takes care of the worst cholesterol, VLDL.

    It is also good for children. Helps them grow better, makes them more prosper and intelligent.

    Careful with the aspirin, it causes male infertility. Better if you don’t use it at all.

  8. All this tweeting is leaving me Twitter-pated. Now Tweety Bird is all a-twitter. The end must be nigh. That’s All Folks!!

  9. So anyone who does not think it’s a really great idea to go to war with Russia is now denied freedom of speech. Where have all the peaceniks gone long time passing?

  10. Congratulations for having provoked the Dackels to yap at your ankles.

    I tweeted a rather tame carricature of Germany’s second worst chancellor, depicting her as she was tearing up the German Constitution with a big knife and got a very pompous emails from “Twitter GERMANY”.

    They advised me that “from now on” my tweets will not be visible in Germany and that they will investigate if the incriminating tweet contravenes their global guidelines. If it so did, then I would be banned globally.

    And that was even before the liberticide law given birth to by Merkel’s enforcer, the Eichman-Look-Alike Heiko Maas, came into force.

    In German they have that delightful phrase for Twitter’s eagerness: “Vorauseilender Gehorsam” . The best translation for this I can find is: “Anticipatory Obedience”.

    They will never accuse GoV of that one 😉

  11. From the Twitter notification you posted :
    “People look to Twitter for useful, timely, and appropriate information.”

    Who DO they think they are? ! People don’t “look to Twitter” for _anything_, other than to provide the mechanicals to communicate with one another.

    As with the old phone companies, in the old days : I don’t care if you built the infrastructure, just operate the damn switchboard properly! What makes you think I care a hoot about your opinion? It’s no better than mine.

    No-one regards Twitter as an authority of any kind, and I wonder who appointed them gatekeeper?

  12. We have such a wordplay “Visiting Kafka”, by analogy with the children’s program “Visiting a Fairy Tale” (Visiting”Skazka” in Russian). At us you can write anything, it is important not to post swastikas and call for the murder and overthrow of Putin.
    Sometimes there are absolutely idiotic cases, such as this:
    This article is about this photo

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