MIAMI (CBS4) – Hillary Clinton spoke of the “Freedom to connect” as a new tenet of American diplomacy last year.  The Secretary of State made her comments about the importance of freedom on the Internet after social media became a weapon for democracy and fueled the Arab Spring.

But now, Twitter has announced it can censor tweets on a country-by-country basis and “twitterers” are up in arms calling for a boycott tomorrow.

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By blocking the reception of certain tweets and certain users in specific countries, Twitter hopes it will be allowed to business in nations with “different ideas” about freedom of expression.

Twitter is currently blocked in China, the country with more internet users than any other.

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One concern for Twitter is that as it expands internationally, the company will have to comply with other countries’ laws or have its employees face arrest.

Google used to censor its searches in China, but stopped two years ago.  It was a brave move to fight repression,  acknowledging internet companies can’t be accomplices to a country’s censorship.

Let’s hope Twitter listens to its democracy-loving users around the world and has the same courage .

 

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