Monday, June 15, 2020

"... and if you don't like that feeble rationalization, we have others."

Recently, my current (and only) Twitter account, "rpjday", was unceremoniously suspended by Twitter. Unsurprisingly, I was given no reason whatsoever, other than Twitter's standard "You have violated our terms of service" -- no precise alleged offense(s), no reference to the relevant tweet(s), and, therefore, no opportunity to delete anything to recover my account. In short, when it comes to giving us left-wing progressives the heave-ho, it was just Twitter being Twitter.

I made a few desultory attempts to appeal, with utterly predictable results -- a relentless and meaningless repetition of the original suspension notice, and nothing more. I was prepared to finally say, oh, fuck it, the bigots, racists and Nazis can have the fucking platform since they seem to own it already, anyway.  Until this morning when, after one more appeal attempt where I insisted on escalating this to a manager, Twitter suddenly moved the goalposts entirely, and it's that story I'll describe so that others who get shafted the same way will at least expect it, and will understand the fundamental dishonesty of Twitter as a fair and balanced social media platform.

You see, it was this morning when I received this response to my latest appeal attempt, where even a bloviating airhead like Pierre Poilievre can see what Twitter is now saying, and I'm going to screencap this since, if I didn't, you'd swear I was making this up:


So, for the very first time, this would be Twitter being a little more precise about the justification for my suspension (still without examples), but before we get into the above-mentioned "platform manipulation rules," let's pause to appreciate something critically important -- that I am being accused of "multiple or severe" violations of said rules. What this means is that, whatever these violations might be, they should be blatant and unambiguous -- they cannot be simply misinterpretations or possibilities. To describe said violations as "multiple or severe" means they had better be massively, screamingly obvious -- anything less than that won't fit Twitter's own description.  And so, to work. (And lest you suggest I am cherry-picking the facts, you're welcome to follow along here at Twitter's own page that explains "platform manipulation.")

I had never really paid attention to the concept of platform manipulation until reading the opening of Twitter's page this morning, which introduces the idea thusly:

Ah, says I, so what we're talking about are the various ways that people, quite simply, "game the system" -- that is obviously what the above is describing. But what, I ask myself, does this have to do with me, as I have never indulged in any of that sort of nonsense. On the other hand, since Twitter is making the accusation, it behooves us to look up the definition of the word "behooves." No, wait, that's not right; rather, it behooves us to go through that page to figure out what my Twitter-related sins might be and, once again, I will emphasize that those sins must be right out front and screamingly clear for Twitter to describe them as "multiple or severe," so let's wander through that page to see what fits the bill, shall we?

I feel comfortable in suggesting that I haven't been engaged in anything even remotely resembling any of the above -- I don't get involved in spam, and I certainly don't "coordinate" my commentary with anyone else in a regular way (it's not as if anyone would want to coordinate with me in the first place). So I don't think any of the above applies to me. Onward.

Here's the very next section:

I'd say I'm in the clear with respect to this section as my profile pic is mine, and all of the bio information is accurate, so I think we can conclude this part is not the problem. Moving on ...

Um, OK ... I'm fairly sure I'm safe with this section as, given that I had just the one active account until Twitter fucked me over, I don't see how I could be guilty of overlapping accounts, mutually interacting accounts or coordination. And as for the rest of that silliness, I think most people would accept that most of what showed up on my Twitter timeline was original content, with the occasional retweet of someone else's work, along with regular lambasting of people who so thoroughly deserved it. In short, I'm going to say that I'm not guilty of anything listed above in any "multiple or severe" way. Once again, onward ...

... where the next category of violations appears to involve trying to game the system in the sense of inflating metrics or analytics or some such thing:

I can safely say I have never engaged in anything even remotely resembling the above so, as before, this section again has nothing to do with me. (Are you starting to sense a pattern?)

On now to alleged misuse of Twitter product features (whatever the hell that means), which is described thusly:

You know what ... if the relentless use of the word "JUXTAPOSE" falls into this category, I might just be guilty, but I'm finding it hard to see how any of the above applies to me. So let's keep going to the very next section:

Um, no ... I'm inordinately lazy in terms of following people at the best of times, and for the life of me, I can't remember adding anyone to a list or tagging a moment. Ever. And as for the next category of alleged violations:

Jesus, I rarely use hashtags at the best of times, so there's no conceivable way this could apply to me. And, finally, we have the alleged violation:

I have never, to my knowledge, posted a link to anything other than what I wanted to use to bolster the tweet it was part of, so if you put all this together, I'm fairly confident I am not guilty of any of the above even once, much less "multiple or severe" examples, as I suspect my regular readers will attest to. But, wait ... here's the best part, as having listed in detail the alleged violations that fall in this category (none of which I am guilty of), Twitter hilariously, right after that, explains the exceptions to all of the above, and I'm sure you will piss yourselves with laughter upon reading what Twitter grants as exceptions:


That's right ... accounts that fall under the category of "parody" or "commentary" are explicitly exempted from these violations. I'm sure you can see the mouth-breathing idiocy in all of this.

In any event, it will be amusing to see how frantically Twitter moves the goalposts when this latest excuse falls flat on its face. I'm sure it will be epic.

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