As another day of competition draws to a close in London, a huge related media story is breaking here on the west coast. At press time, The Huffington Post, Mediate and Mashable are among the latest outlets reporting the suspension from Twitter yesterday of Guy Adams, LA based correspondent for UK’s The Independent.
After tweeting out the corporate email address of an NBC executive on Friday as part of a series of rants about the network’s decision to tape-delay the opening ceremony, Adams was suspended from the service on Sunday for violation of terms of service. But in a piece posted today, Adams questions the logic of this decision, sharing the latest email he sent to Twitter’s European PR head Rachel Bremer:
“I’m of course happy to abide by Twitter’s rules, now and forever,” the email reads. “But I don’t see how I broke them in this case: I didn’t publish a private email address. Just a corporate one, which is widely available to anyone with access to Google, and is identical [in form] to one that all of the tens of thousands of NBC Universal employees share. It’s no more “private” than the address I’m emailing you from right now.”
“Either way, [it’s] quite worrying that NBC, whose parent company are an Olympic sponsor, are apparently trying (and, in this case, succeeding) in shutting down the Twitter accounts of journalists who are critical of their Olympic coverage.”
Adams is right. These actions seem to have everything to do with who complained rather than the idea that the Friday tweet in fact properly violated Twitter’s accepted rules of behavior.
Update – 07/31/12: Adams is now back in Twitter business. And in one of his first tweets, he reveals that an email from Twitter says “we have just received an update from the complainant retracting their original request…” So it appears that NBC Sports rescinded the earlier complaint, which the network says it only filled out after being first contacted by Twitter.