Twitter suspends accounts backing ex-dictator’s son — Analysis
Platform blocks hundreds of accounts which supported the Philippine presidential campaign of Ferdinand Marcos Jr.
Twitter has shut down more than 300 accounts that the platform says were promoting Filipino presidential candidate Ferdinand Marcos Jr., son of the notorious dictator who was deposed in the country’s ‘People Power’Movement of 1986
On Friday, the tech company announced that accounts would be suspended for violating its policy against manipulation and spam. “We remain vigilant about identifying and eliminating suspected information campaigns targeting election conversations,”A Twitter representative stated that it is continuing to investigate suspicious accounts.
After Rappler’s social media report that Marcos supporters attempted to dominate the online conversation on the Philippine election, this crackdown was carried out days later. The accounts were created within a matter of months. To make an issue appear more popular, fake users (e.g. automated accounts or paid for accounts) can be used.
Vic Rodriguez was the chief of staff at Marcos and issued a commendation for Twitter. “keeping a close watch against platform manipulation, spam and other attempts to undermine the public conversation.” However, he added that it’s not certain that the suspended accounts belonged to supporters of Marcos.
Even though Ferdinand Marcos Sr. ruled for over two decades, the Marcos wealthy family continues to be politically powerful in the Philippines. After his death in 1989, Marcos Sr. was accused of corruption, human rights abuses and fraud. Imelda Marcos, his wife, lived a luxurious lifestyle. She went on extravagant shopping trips for jewelry, art and shoes that reached 3,000 pairs. And yet, evidencing the family’s enduring political influence, she served in the Philippine House of Representatives as recently as 2019, filling a seat previously held by her son Ferdinand.
Marcos younger brother, is also well-known as ‘Bongbong,’He is currently Rodrigo Duterte-Carpio’s leading candidate to be the next president. Sara Duterte Carpio is his running mate, the daughter of current president. Top rivals include current Vice President Leni Robredo, Manila Mayor Francisco ‘Isko Moreno’ Domagoso and boxing hero Manny Pacquiao.
Marcos Jr. won’t run in 2016 for vice-presidential election. However, he cleared hurdles earlier this week after he was able to overcome a legal challenge that restricted his eligibility for running for office. Due to a previous tax conviction, the petition to block Marcos Jr.’s candidacy was rejected by the Philippine electoral commission.