As Turkey Bans Twitter, Twitter Use Surges
Turkey banned Twitter Thursday night because of “biases" and "systematic character assassinations" it says take place on the network. Namely, that people are sharing audio recordings and other evidence of alleged mass corruption in the Erdogan government.
Despite the ban, or maybe because of it, Twitter use within Turkey just skyrocketed. Via Venture Beat:
After banning Twitter last night, the actions of Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan have failed spectacularly.
Immediately following Turkey’s ban, Twitter issued an SMS workaround. Then, ”#TwitterisblockedinTurkey” became a globally trending topic on Twitter. Into the night, usage of Google’s free DNS service exploded to circumvent the blockage of Twitter’s domain. Now, social media analysis firms Brandwatch and We Are Social report that Turkish tweets last night and this morning are up by a massive 138 percent…
…Turkish users collectively tweeted 2.5 million times since the ban went into effect, potentially “setting new records for Twitter use in the country,” according to a different study reported by the Guardian.
As Zeynep Tufekci explains, people in Turkey “banned the ban” by sharing tips on using proxies and adjusting DNS settings to get around government blocking:
By the end of the evening, I repeated the same line in interviews and also on Twitter: the only people “banned” from Twitter are pro-government supporters not wanting to openly circumvent. But then even some of them started popping up, arguing the ban must be a mistake or a devious plot by the opponents in the judiciary where they had been battling a faction. It was 3 am in Turkey and it seemed that many people on my Twitter list, who normally would be asleep by then, were awake, rejoicing in the freedom they’d clutched. They were not going to let go. Jokes were proliferating about the weakness of the ban, the fact that pro-government supporters had mostly decided to stay away, and the fact that the prolific Tweeter and mayor of Ankara from the ruling party had not been able to resist the temptation. He had circumvented.
Image: A woman paints Google’s Public DNS on her body, a method being used to get around Turkey’s Twitter ban, via @_cypherpunks_. Related, graffiti in Turkey is appearing that promotes the same.