UPDATE: Twitter has clarified that Rose McGowan’s account was temporarily locked because one of her tweets included a private phone number. In a statement this morning, the social media platform says the offending message has been removed and that the company promises to “be clearer about these policies and decisions in the future.”
Late Wednesday, McGowan, a vocal online presence in the wake of the revelations of sexual harassment allegations against Harvey Weinstein, wrote on Instagram that her Twitter handle had been “suspended” (see below). The platform’s decision to lock the account for 12 hours was then met with consternation given the opacity of the reasons behind it. Along with promising to be clearer, Twitter also noted it is “proud to empower and support the voices on our platform.”
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Here is Twitter’s statement in full:
“We have been in touch with Ms. McGowan’s team. We want to explain that her account was temporarily locked because one of her Tweets included a private phone number, which violates of our Terms of Service. The Tweet was removed and her account has been unlocked. We will be clearer about these policies and decisions in the future.
“Twitter is proud to empower and support the voices on our platform, especially those that speak truth to power. We stand with the brave women and men who use Twitter to share their stories, and will work hard every day to improve our processes to protect those voices.”
PREVIOUS, 1:55 AM: Actress Rose McGowan, who was cited in the New York Times bombshell exposé that revealed sexual harassment allegations against Harvey Weinstein, and who has been a vocal presence in the ensuing storm, says her Twitter activity has been suspended. McGowan revealed the suspension in an Instagram post late Wednesday night. “Twitter has suspended me. There are powerful forces at work. Be my voice,” she wrote. The suspension was due to last 12 hours and limited McGowan posting messages, but not all activity.
It wasn’t immediately clear which tweets violated Twitter’s rules. The actress had previously posted a message telling Ben Affleck to “F*** off” and accused him of lying about his knowledge of Weinstein’s history.
In February, it was reported that Twitter was rolling out changes that would see it determine if an account was being abusive (the criteria was not revealed at the time). It would then hide the account’s tweets from anyone not already a follower, per The Verge, and the restrictions would last for a set period.
McGowan has been one of the most vocal, high-profile figures to speak out in the ongoing Weinstein controversy since the NYT article surfaced. The report alleged that eight settlements were paid to women who found themselves sexually harassed by the executive, including McGowan.
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