This Report Reveals Widespread Government Crackdowns on Twitter and Facebook

Certain governments around the world are prone to blocking or banning social media sites because of the fact that this is the sort of thing that could potentially end up informing citizens about their rights. Such social media sites can allow people to exchange information and communicate with each other in a way that authoritarian governments might not want, since it can make their power weaker than might have been the case otherwise.

Accessnow recently conducted a study that shed some light on which platforms ended up getting blocked the most. With all of that having been said and now out of the way, it is important to note that Twitter and Facebook ended up being the most frequently targeted social media sites of all. They were both blocked thirteen times each over the course of 2022, largely due to their immense popularity among users around the globe.

Countries like China, Iran and Russia blocked both of these sites, and Turkey and Sri Lanka joined them as well due to the protests that were occurring in those countries caused by economic mismanagement. Myanmar and North Korea were also in this list, which just goes to show that countries that lack democratic norms are far more likely to try to ban Twitter and Facebook.

Instagram and WhatsApp were tied for second place, with each platform having been blocked at least ten times last year. They were followed by Google Services with nine bans, Telegram with eight, and the discreet messaging service Signal with a total of five bans.

TikTok also saw several bans, more specifically four. In spite of the fact that this is the case, America’s recent attempts to enact their own ban on the rapidly growing social media site might lead to a domino effect that would result in it getting blocked far more times by other countries that might want to follow suit.

The state of internet freedom is perilous right now. Steps must be taken to ensure access to social media sites, or at least prevent governments from enacting blanket bans that can restrict access among their citizens.

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