Connect with us

Medias

Thai Army Denies Twitter Claims on Spread of Propaganda

Twitter’s blockage of the 926 accounts came two weeks after Thailand brought police complaints against Facebook, Twitter and Instagram for not fully complying with court orders to take down content on their platforms deemed defamatory to Thailand’s royalty

Published

on

Thailand’s army on Friday denied links with around a 1,000 Twitter accounts that the social media company blocked a day earlier saying the military was using them to spread propaganda and target the opposition.

Any social media used by the army aims only to provide information to the public in need of assistance during times of emergency, said Lt. Gen. Santipong Thammapiya, the spokesman for Royal Thai Army (RTA), a day after Twitter said it suspended 926 accounts in Thailand, which it “can reliably link” to the military.

“This is not an I.O. by the army. We did not do that as reported,” Santipong told reporters, using the abbreviation for “information operations.”

“All [of the] army’s social media are used for its public relations, and, especially for emergency cases that we can help people quickly.”

According to the Rand Corp., a California-based think-tank, “information operations” are also known as influence operations. They include the spread of propaganda to gain advantage over opponents.

On Thursday, Twitter wrote on its blog that the Thai accounts it blocked “were engaging in amplifying pro-RTA and pro-government content, as well as engaging in behavior targeting prominent political opposition figures.”

“The network was used primarily to promote pro-government and pro-military positions and accounts on Twitter and to attack political opposition, particularly the Future Forward Party and Move Forward Party (FFP and MFP, respectively),” said a report published Thursday by the Stanford Internet Observatory, a group Twitter shared its data with.

Twitter’s blockage of the 926 accounts came two weeks after Thailand brought police complaints against Facebook, Twitter and Instagram for not fully complying with court orders to take down content on their platforms deemed defamatory to Thailand’s royalty.

Thailand lodged those complaints amid a months-long pro-democracy campaign by activists and five days after tens of thousands of demonstrators converged in the heart of Bangkok to demand the government’s dissolution, a new constitution and reforms to the monarchy.

Puttipong Punnagun, the Thai minister for Digital Economy and Society, said Twitter’s announcement a day earlier took him by surprise because he believed the company should instead be working to comply with the court’s order.

“It is surprising that Twitter released this information during this time rather than following the Thai court’s orders and Thai law which calls for a ban or deletion of accounts that insult Thailand’s key institutions,” Puttipong said on his Facebook page Friday.

“We previously submitted court orders to it, but Twitter ignored them, did not delete 65 URLs. We are about to send them a new batch of orders, 253 orders. We call on Twitter to follow suit and show sincerity to exhibit Twitter’s transparency.”

Nontarat Phaicharoen contributed to this report.

Copyright ©2015-2020, BenarNews. Used with the permission of BenarNews.

Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Opinion

Thailand’s Vaccine Strategy: What went wrong?

Questions are being asked, and not answered, over the decision to rely almost entirely on Siam Bioscience, a local, palace-owned company with no experience of making vaccines, for the country’s vaccine needs, until an unseemly scramble began this year to procure alternatives.

Published

on

Last year Thailand won worldwide praise for its effective measures to contain COVID-19. This year the government is facing growing public outrage over the failure to control new covid outbreaks, and the slow acquisition of vaccines.

(more…)
Continue Reading

Business

Thai economy in the pandemic era: can it ever be the same?

What is the way forward for Thailand, and how strong is the case for a radical overhaul of economic and development policies?

Published

on

Forecasts for Thai economic growth this year have been widely slashed to less than 2%, some much lower, reflecting growing gloom about the trajectory of an economy battling the third wave of COVID-19 and resulting lockdowns and social distancing measures.

(more…)
Continue Reading

Most Viewed

Subscribe via Email

Enter your email address to subscribe and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 14,160 other subscribers

Wise

Recent