Monday, July 16, 2012

Hey la ha, my Twitter's back.

My Twitter account, suspended without explanation on Saturday, was restored without explanation today.

During the suspension, an automated message challenged me to guess what I had done wrong. I responded over the weekend with nervous guesses regarding my (very moderate) uses of the Twitterfeed and Storify third-party services, and a request to be told if any other concerns were involved. As of this evening my service is back. I still do not know why my account was suspended, nor why it was restored.

This experience has reminded me forcefully of the importance of American due process -- that is, of the right to receive notice of the alleged grounds for a deprivation of life, liberty or property, and an opportunity to be heard in response. Not only as a material guarantee, but as a protection for the dignity of the citizen. There really is nothing quite like being left to wonder how one has offended a powerful institution.

[Ah: late evening same night, from Twitter:

"Twitter has automated systems that find and remove multiple automated spam accounts in bulk. Unfortunately, it looks like your account got caught up in one of these spam groups by mistake.
I've restored your account; sorry for the inconvenience."]

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