Twitter's Biz Stone: Freedom of Expression Is a Human Right

By Nicholas Jackson

In the wake of the protests in Egypt, Twitter co-founder Biz Stone took to his company's blog on Friday to argue that freedom of expression is an undeniable human right. "Our goal is to instantly connect people everywhere to what is most meaningful to them," Stone wrote in a post entitled "The Tweets Must Flow." "For this to happen, freedom of expression is essential."

Without ever writing the word Egypt, Stone and Twitter were very likely addressing in part the recent unrest there and in other nations.

"Some Tweets may facilitate positive change in a repressed country, some make us laugh, some make us think, some downright anger a vast majority of users," Stone said. "The open exchange of information can have a positive global impact. This is both a practical and ethical belief."

And, on a practical level, he said, the social media website doesn't have the resources to review each of the more than 100 million Tweets delivered on its site every day.

"From an ethical perspective, almost every country in the world agrees that freedom of expression is a human right. Many countries also agree that freedom of expression carries with it responsibilities and has limits," Stone said.

Read the full story at the Los Angeles Times.

This article available online at:

http://www.theatlantic.com/technology/archive/2011/01/twitters-biz-stone-freedom-of-expression-is-a-human-right/70468/