On 16th June, Twitter lost its legal shield in India over its failure to comply with the government’s new IT rules.

This means Twitter would be treated as a publisher and will be held liable for punishment under any law if a case is filed against it for alleged unlawful content. 

There have also been speculations of a possible ban of the platform in India but the Union Minister recently said the government is not in favour of banning it.  

While this comes as a relief for many, you should know that there are a few governments that have banned or blocked Twitter in their country. 

1. North Korea 

In April 2016, the North Korean government banned social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter and YouTube to further control access to outside information. Most North Korean citizens don’t have access to foreign websites and even if they do, they are limited to a sealed-off, government-sanctioned intranet. And, anyone who tries to access it without special permission from the government is subjected to punishment. 


2. China

Twitter was officially blocked in China in June 2009. However, reports suggest that many Chinese people circumvent the block to use the social media platform. In fact, some major companies like Huawei use Twitter through a government approved VPN. Apart from that, dozens of Chinese officials and diplomats have Twitter accounts that they use. 


3. Iran

The Iranian government blocked Twitter in September 2009 during the presidential election due to fear of protests being organised. In September 2013, the block was briefly lifted but it didn’t last for long. The block was put in place within a day. 


4. Turkmenistan 

Foreign websites and apps like Twitter, Whatsapp and Facebook have been blocked in Turkmenistan. As of 2018, foreign news, opposition websites and international social networks such as Twitter are “often inaccessible”.


5. Nigeria

The Nigerian government put an indefinite ban on Twitter on 5th June 2021 after the social media platform deleted tweets made by the Nigerian President. The government claimed that Twitter was banned for “undermining Nigeria’s corporate existence” by spreading fake news that can have violent consequences.


Click here to know about Twitter’s policies.