Twitter denies suppressing #wikileaks

Posted by Emma Woollacott

With companies falling over themselves to distance themselves from Wikileaks, there's been a lot of talk in the blogosphere over the last 24 hours about why Wikileaks has been failing to trend on Twitter - after all, it's probably one of the most widespread subjects of discussion on Earth right now.

And Twitter has been stung into a response, claiming that it's not, absolutely not, a craven kow-towing to the US government. It's decided to explain exactly how a topic makes it as a Twitter Trend.

"Twitter Trends are automatically generated by an algorithm that attempts to identify topics that are being talked about more right now than they were previously. The Trends list is designed to help people discover the 'most breaking' breaking news from across the world, in real-time," says the company.

"The Trends list captures the hottest emerging topics, not just what’s most popular. Put another way, Twitter favors novelty over popularity."

In other words, the fact that people have been talking about Wikileaks non-stop for a week is exactly why it hasn't appeared as a top trending topic. If we all shut up now, and then start again in a few days, things could look very different.

But while Twitter may have nothing against Wikileaks itself, it's no friend of the hackers who have been targeting Wikileaks' opponents. Twitter has suspended the Anon_Operation account after it appeared to be linked to the Anonymous group of hackers which has hit MasterCard, PayPal and other organizations.

Undaunted, though, they've reappeared courtesy a crafty typo at Anon_Operationn, here.