Mass suspension of Twitter accounts critical of Zelensky visit blamed on Ukrainian bots

by WorldTribune Staff / 247 Real News December 23, 2022

A large number of Twitter accounts were summarily suspended after criticizing Ukrainian leader Volodymyr Zelensky’s speech before the U.S. Congress on Wednesday. The suspensions were being blamed in large part on Ukrainian bots.

Disgraceful: Kamala Harris and Nancy Pelosi display the Ukraine flag in the U.S. Congress as Ukrainian leader Volodymyr Zelensky speaks. / Video Image

Several accounts not only blasted Zelensky’s speech and the response by members of Congress, but slammed the disgraceful vision of the Ukrainian flag being raised in the United States Congress.

“I’m now getting reports of tons of accounts that were locked out or tweets that were taken down for posting images of Zelensky’s speech last night and being critical of him seems to be a mass takedown campaign by Twitter,” conservative commentator Jack Posobiec reported.

Posobiec pointed out that Twitter had locked the @ALX account for 12 hours for posting a comment about the Ukrainian flag in Congress. Twitter CEO Elon Musk responded that he was looking into it as the “tweet doesn’t violate ToS.”

Posobiec added: “Update, could be a mass-reporting situation by trolls or state actors.” The idea is that the tweets critical of Zelensky could have been the target of a mass-reporting campaign, with the intention of silencing anti-Zelensky sentiment on the platform.

William Wolfe, a Trump administration official who served in the State Department and the Department of Defense, said he was slapped with a 12 hour ban for tweeting a photo of Kamala Harris and Nancy Pelosi holding up the Ukraine flag.

The Columbia Bugle’s account was suspended simply for tweeting the photo with “Bring a check next time.”

A combat veteran with the Twitter handle @BowTiedRanger was locked out of his account after mass false reports were filed against him by a bot army triggered by his comments critical of the $100 billion in American tax dollars Congress has gifted to Ukraine.

Kristen Ruby, who reported on internal workings at Twitter amid the Twitter Files drops, said: “The answer is in the ML [machine learning]. Based on the data, the tweet *does* violate Twitter’s former political misinfo policy re detection/ param list. If those parameters are not gutted or retrained- this will keep happening. The algorithm is doing exactly what it was trained to do.”

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