Twitter has suspended the account of British journalist Guy Adams (@guyadams), in the wake of his fierce criticism of NBC’s Olympic Coverage. Adams, the Los Angeles correspondent for Britain’s “The Independent,” had a scathing stream of tweets about the network’s coverage, pointing out factual errors and asking if car advertising was an Olympic sport. It appears, however, to have been revealing the email address of NBC Universal’s “President, NBC Olympics” Gary Zenkel that earned his account suspension.
It is not clear what rule Adams violated. Twitter has a policy against the release of someone’s “private and confidential information,” but an email address does not seem to be on the same plane as a credit card number, a social security number or a street address. Twitter has a partnership with NBC Sports to promote the games, which likely explains the broad interpretation of the rule. It might also explain how “#NBC” was a twitter trend but “#NBCfail” was not.
Adams is purportedly publishing a piece in response to the banning. This is more horrendous PR for NBC and it’s only the fourth day.
UPDATE: Statement from NBC via Richard Deitsch
UPDATE II: Statement from Guy Adams’ email in the Independent.
“I’m of course happy to abide by Twitter’s rules, now and forever,” it reads. “But I don’t see how I broke them in this case: I didn’t publish a private email address. Just a corporate one, which is widely available to anyone with access to Google, and is identical [in form] to one that all of the tens of thousands of NBC Universal employees share. It’s no more “private” than the address I’m emailing you from right now. Either way, [it’s] quite worrying that NBC, whose parent company are an Olympic sponsor, are apparently trying (and, in this case, succeeding) in shutting down the Twitter accounts of journalists who are critical of their Olympic coverage.”
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