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Twitter Allegedly Deleting Negative Tweets About United Airlines' Passenger Abuse (thenextweb.com) 233

New submitter dooode writes: As you would have read, United just had another Nazi moment where they had to "re-accommodate" a customer using some (not so gentle) force. The social web seems to have been taken by a storm by this incident. But suddenly people are noticing their tweets are being deleted -- some of them merely status questions. Does twitter make money (read bribes) to delete negative tweets? What do you feel about it? The Next Web adds that "some of the allegedly deleted tweets did not directly mention the incident with the forcibly removed passenger." On the flip side, "some of the initial tweets exposing United Airlines' abusive treatment of passengers are still very much present and actively being reshared on the platform." It's possible that the "allegedly deleted tweets" initially appeared as replies to now-deleted tweets, but TNW says they contacted several users who rejected that premise, "claiming the missing posts were standard tweets."
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Twitter Allegedly Deleting Negative Tweets About United Airlines' Passenger Abuse

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  • by uCallHimDrJ0NES ( 2546640 ) on Tuesday April 11, 2017 @06:45PM (#54218073)

    Steering people to a platform where they get used to being censored is the entire point of Web 2.0, isn't it? What, do you want people to learn how to host their own webpages again? Luddite.

    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by Anonymous Coward

      even reddit mods nixed the original posting of the video (in /r/videos)

      https://www.reddit.com/r/video... [reddit.com]

      https://www.reddit.com/r/undel... [reddit.com]

      but *supposedly* not because of caving to corporate interests but for showing "police brutality" and "assault and/or battery"

    • by Okian Warrior ( 537106 ) on Tuesday April 11, 2017 @07:19PM (#54218297) Homepage Journal

      Steering people to a platform where they get used to being censored is the entire point of Web 2.0, isn't it? What, do you want people to learn how to host their own webpages again? Luddite.

      It's clearly hate speech, and should be deleted for that reason.

      You wouldn't want people to be able to shout hateful things on the internet, would you?

      And besides, it's not the government that's doing it, it's a private company. They can censor anything they want because they're not bound by the constitution, and people are free to leave twitter and start their own social media service.

      Also: Gab.aio [slashdot.org] is a free-speech twitter alternative. Check out their humor channel sometime - it's actually funny!

      • by AmiMoJo ( 196126 ) <mojo@Nospam.world3.net> on Wednesday April 12, 2017 @03:34AM (#54220129) Homepage Journal

        Before condemning Twitter for oppressing your sacred tweets, perhaps we should establish if they did actually delete them or not. So far we have some claims from some dubious accounts that tweets went missing, but no actual evidence. No tweet ID numbers, no archived copies, no orphaned responses to the missing tweets... When tweets are deleted, it doesn't kill of replies to them, it just breaks the reply chain and you can easily see what happened.

        I'm calling bullshit on this one until someone produces some actual evidence. If you don't need proof then let's have a conversation about how Slashdot deletes "controversial" posts and how awful that is, because even though I have no evidence I swear it really happened!

      • Steering people to a platform where they get used to being censored is the entire point of Web 2.0, isn't it? What, do you want people to learn how to host their own webpages again? Luddite.

        It's clearly hate speech, and should be deleted for that reason.

        Yeah, I hate hate speech so much! Oh wait...

    • Technically ISPs can also censor your web pages anyway.

    • Twatter is, and always has been, entirely untrustworthy. Years ago they censored one of the first tweets I ever made - a link to leaked police state documents. That was when I stopped using their duplicitous service.

      • by Topwiz ( 1470979 )
        Scott Adams (Dilbert) has seen some of his tweets about Trump go invisible to his followers so he has been instead using the word "Kittens" in tweets that link to his blog entries about Trump. There also is some evidence of Twitter dropping peoples followers in order to keep them under certain thresholds.
    • [This post has been deleted]
  • Usually it's phrased "How do you feel?" and "What do you think?". (Perhaps you could ask someone reaching into a dark hole "What do you feel?") Also, you don't normally say "What do you think about it?" because the "about it" part is implied.

  • "another Nazi moment"

    Uh, Godwin's law? If "new submitter dooode" hasn't heard from the news, drawing any such comparisons is very much off-limits.
  • ...was the bizarre term used by the CEO.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday April 11, 2017 @06:54PM (#54218157)

    I have no clue whether they "deleted tweets" and if so which and how many about what.

    But can people please stop acting surprised when you centralize your communications on a commercial service you do not control, cannot run yourself on your own node because it's proprietary, and which grants itself 100% control of the contents of your communications, and then that service somehow alters or removes things you say? It's all inside their walled garden. You said that was OK when you signed up.

    If you give control to someone, don't complain when they use it.

  • by SuperKendall ( 25149 ) on Tuesday April 11, 2017 @06:56PM (#54218169)

    Twitter has obviously gotten WAY away from being a Common Carrier in any sense, since they are constantly cherry-picking what is and is not allowed to be seen.

    Someone needs to file a lawsuit over this and soon, so Twitter can go back to being a platform.

    • Twitter has obviously gotten WAY away from being a Common Carrier in any sense,

      WTF are you talking about? Twitter is not & has never been a common carrier. You do not have the intelligence to comment on this (or probably any other matter).

      • by rtb61 ( 674572 )

        Twitter as common carrier is more of a marketing perception created by Twitter, obviously Twitter does not want to market itself as what it is a marketing channel designed to be controlled over time to present corporate preferred messaging. Juts like the bullshit Google is putting out about YouTube censorship being demanded by corporations a total crock of shit. The corporations lose big when they give up on advertising channels, not those advertising channels especially one the size of YouTube, so what is

    • "Common Carrier"?!

    • Twitter was never considered a "common carrier" at all, so they cannot move "WAY away" from something they never where in the first place. "The Earth has obviously gotten WAY away from being a star", "your mom has obviously gotten WAY away from being a paper clip" make about as much sense. I know what your trying to say, but - in reference to the Telecommunications Act of 1996 - Twitter in no way has ever resembled the regulatory definition of a "common carrier". It's a service provided by a non-governmen
  • by eaglesrule ( 4607947 ) on Tuesday April 11, 2017 @07:11PM (#54218235)

    I would be interested to know if UA uses any of the "reputation management companies" on this list [businessnewsdaily.com]. Do they put in the call to Twitter and other social media platforms, or is it handled directly by corporate?

    Either way, its all hands on deck for the corporate shills. They will censor where they can, and are already using character assassination as a tactic.

    • by AmiMoJo ( 196126 )

      Since United has doing a u-turn and apologised now, presumably they will be asking for a refund from these "reputation management" companies who have utterly failed to manage their reputation.

      The story is bullshit. There is zero evidence that tweets were deleted, and masses of evidence that a grassroots campaign on Twitter forced a large corporation to reverse course and admit their mishandling of the situation. It's fake news.

  • by Anonymous Coward

    "United just had another Nazi moment "

    This is beyond even Gawker grade shit posting.

    Twitter deleting posts is a good story.
    Whether or not United Airlines calling in the police to drag an uncooperative passenger off the plane (as was their right to do) is crossing the line is a good story.

    Calling the actions nazi-esque (which they were not) is kindergarten level bullshit.

    But maybe I shouldn't be surprised at how far this site as fallen.

  • what's twitter? it's become a text based implementation of an Apple style walled garden it would seem.
  • by Nutria ( 679911 ) on Tuesday April 11, 2017 @07:36PM (#54218397)

    Are you an Oprah wannabe?

  • already pointed this out, but it bears repeating: Nothing will come of this because all the major airlines were allowed to merge into 4 big ones and they tacitly collude to avoid competition. So if you need to fly sooner or later you're going to be a customer of United or you're gonna pay though the nose x10 taking the most round about routes possible (fancy going from LA to Phoenix via Barcelona?).

    This is why we used to regulate public services like transportation. But as the saying goes ain't nobody g
    • by Fire_Wraith ( 1460385 ) on Tuesday April 11, 2017 @09:16PM (#54218913)
      Ironically, it's the backlash in China that may hurt United the most, because unlike domestic customers, international ones have lots of other options, and United has the biggest share of the US-China routes among the US carriers (20 percent, while Delta and American have 8 each). This incident has already gone viral in China, and has people calling for boycotts there too.
      • China's pretty damn corrupt on it's own merits. It's sheer size makes it look more competitive than it actually is.
        • by HiThere ( 15173 )

          Not denying that it's "pretty damn corrupt on it's own merits" as I don't have any unbiased evidence, but it's sheer size means that it *is* competitive. It doesn't just look competitive. When you count it as an entity (say for international travel) then it *is* competitive.

    • Which route only has United?
  • I think there's a word that applies to situations where corporations utilize the police power of the state to enforce their corporate whims...

  • by suso ( 153703 ) * on Tuesday April 11, 2017 @11:29PM (#54219393) Homepage Journal

    I've been saving the stream of "united" tweets since Apr 10 15:32. At this point I have close to 4 million tweets saved and over 700MB of data. I may have the deleted tweets, but definitely not if they don't have the word united in them.

    I think some users may be confused. I can see in the data that @Jay_Beecher's earliest tweet about united was April 10th 18:12, which seems to be the one he is thinking was deleted. But that tweet is here [twitter.com]. If he thinks its gone because he is looking at his normal tweet timeline, then he doesn't understand how Twitter's interface works. It doesn't show tweets that start with an @. Other people I checked (TalkIBC, iknowimbitter, seem to be equally confused.

    Based on the data I have, I don't think Twitter deleted any tweets.

    • by mu22le ( 766735 )

      I've been saving the stream of "united" tweets since Apr 10 15:32.

      What kind of psycho paranoid are you? :)

      (but, really, why are you doing it?)

      • by suso ( 153703 ) *

        Historical conservation. I expected that this might be a watershed event in American history and thought it was worth preserving as many tweets as possible to preserve the attitudes and thoughts (and perhaps misconceptions) of the public. Besides, its easy enough to do.

      • by suso ( 153703 ) *

        What kind of psycho paranoid are you? :)

        Also, you jokingly suggested I was a psycho paranoid for saving this data, but obviously the data was already useful in discrediting a news story major enough to be on Slashdot's front page. So maybe not so paranoid?

  • This wouldn't happen on Mastodon [mastodon.social]! It's distributed and decentralized

  • Is it really accurate to call it a "Nazi moment"? Were the Nazis in the habit of dragging people off of planes? I mean, I get that it's trendy these days to accuse people of being a Nazi just for disagreeing with you, but...

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