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Twitter apologizes for mistake in suspending journalist Guy Adams

The company admitted it made a mistake by "proactively monitoring and flagging" journalist Guy Adams' tweets about NBC's Olympics coverage.


Michelle Jaworski


Posted on Jul 31, 2012   Updated on Jun 2, 2021, 1:36 pm CDT

Twitter has finally broken its silence on the suspension of journalist Guy Adams just hours after his account was restored.

“We want to apologize for the part of this story that we did mess up,” Twitter General Counsel Alex Macgillivray wrote in a blog post. “The team working closely with NBC around our Olympics partnership did proactively identify a Tweet that was in violation of the Twitter rules and encouraged them to file a support ticket with our Trust and Safety team to report the violation.”

The Daily Dot reported earlier today that it was Twitter, not NBC, who originally filed the complaint against Adams’s tweet, which included the email address of NBC Olympics president Gary Zenkel.

Macgillivray took to the blog to explain some of Twitter’s Trust and Safety policies in detail, which outlined what happens when they receive a report regarding private and personal information.

When an account is suspended for privacy reasons, Twitter will contact the account holder by email. That person will then be asked to confirm that they understand Twitter’s privacy policies and confirm that they will follow the Terms of Service from that point forward.

“Once they have confirmed this for us in their email response, their account is unsuspended,” Macgillivray explained.

Macgillivray also added that the Trust and Safety team does not have a set policy when they receive a complaint about a corporate email address and stated that Twitter needs to be able to account for every instance.

Macgillivray personally apologized to Adams on Twitter and vowed to not let something like this happen again.

“This behavior is not acceptable and undermines the trust our users have in us,” he wrote. “We should not and cannot be in the business of proactively monitoring and flagging content, no matter who the user is–whether a business partner, celebrity or friend.”

Adams talked to CNN earlier today about the controversy but has yet to respond to Twitter’s apology.

Photo via CNN

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*First Published: Jul 31, 2012, 5:49 pm CDT