Censorship of Twitter: What? When? Where?

Apps Mar 16, 2021

Twitter is a microblogging platform for communication through the exchange of short messages, which are called tweets. Tweets can be up to 140 characters long and may contain photos, videos, links, and text.
Twitter is one of the most popular international social networks for public messaging, owned by Twitter Inc. The total audience of the social media platform is more than 340 million users, and about 500 million tweets are posted daily. Twitter is ranked 4th in the world and 5th in the United States by popularity.

In 2006, Jack Dorsey came up with the idea to develop an online service that would allow friends to exchange short messages quickly. The first implementation of this idea was carried out in July 2006. At that time, the new web service was called twttr.com because the domain name twitter.com was already taken.

At first, Twitter did not become widespread: its only users were its creators and their families. Later, the service's user audience began to expand, especially when the first Twitter client for the iPhone was launched in January 2007. And the real popularity of Twitter came in March 2007.

In March 2007, during the South by Southwest festival, the number of tweets per day increased from 20,000 to 60,000 in just a day. Then there were the MTV Music Awards and Apple WWDC 2007, which brought worldwide popularity to Twitter.

By 2008, Twitter had acquired an audience of 1,3 million users. In 2009, the number of Twitter users reached 6 million. In 2010, the growth rate in popularity of the social network had increased incredibly: Twitter had 105 million users.

Twitter had entered the last quarter of 2011 with more than 200 million registered users, and as of May 2012, this figure was already 580 million.

Currently, Twitter has about 29% of users from the USA, 14% from Japan, 6% of users from the UK, about 4% from Brazil, and almost 4% from Canada.


  • The ability to share your opinion, important events, and view the news of friends, celebrities, and major media.
  • The ability to retweet posts, chat in threads.
  • The ability to follow your interests. Depending on your interests, Twitter will select suitable accounts for you.
  • Search for news by hashtags.
  • The ability to send an unlimited number of characters in direct messages.
  • The ability to send full-size pictures and videos.

Countries where it is blocked:
The social network Twitter is blocked by the Great Firewall. Moreover, China has its own microblogging platform similar to Twitter, which is called Weibo. However, Twitter reports that 10 to 35 million Chinese internet users still have access to Twitter. Chinese users cannot access the website or app using local IP addresses and are forced to use VPN services to search for tweets or any platform content.

North Korea
While any access to Twitter in North Korea has been criminalized since 2016, this has not resulted in a significant drop in the global user base as there is no internet access in the country in general. Even foreigners are not allowed to access Twitter in North Korea.

While it is possible to use a VPN to bypass these restrictions, it is not recommended for any traveler in North Korea to do so as most Internet access points are strictly monitored, and even simply connecting to a VPN is a criminal offense.

Twitter was banned in Iran in 2009 after protests that were organized using this social network and, since then, the new government has never lifted this ban.

Pakistan allows users to access Twitter freely, but Pakistani authorities have demanded that large numbers of words, phrases, and even accounts be blocked or removed from Twitter if tweets defame Islam.