Twitter is under immense pressure to undertake a clean up act. Not only is there pressure from India, but from several other countries following a report that there are 46,000 Twitter accounts sympathetic to the ISIS.
Each one of these accounts play a major role in propagating the ISIS ideology and for anti terror squads from across the world this is a headache that is growing leaps and bounds.
46000 ISIS Twitter accounts
Several security agencies from across the world have compiled information on the growing menace of the ISIS on Twitter. It was found that there were at least 46,000 accounts sympathetic to the ISIS which put out tweets regularly in a bid to spread the propaganda.
None of these accounts are officially run by the ISIS. They belong to sympathizers who tweet and re-tweet information about the ISIS on a regular basis.
The ISIS media wing called the Al-Hayat provides information to these twitter handles which in turn put out the information for the rest of the world to see.
The Al-Hayat provides information regarding recruitments and also the beheading videos shot by them to these handles. The messages of the ISIS get re-tweeted several times.
Twitter magic has worked for the ISIS
Analysts and Intelligence Bureau officials point out that the twitter has worked wonders for the ISIS and also the rest of the terror groups.
Free flowing information the lack of monitoring have all worked wonders for the propaganda of the ISIS. The videos that are put out by these sympathizers have the biggest draw and believe it has helped the ISIS lure several youth into their fold.
What about YouTube and Facebook?
While the problem is immense on Twitter, officials say that YouTube and Facebook too act as good mediums for the ISIS to spread their propaganda. Reports would suggest that the ISIS may be running nearly 30,000 accounts on YouTube and Facebook.
However Twitter continues to be the biggest draw for the ISIS as they feel that the posts get more traction out there.
What should Twitter do?
Intelligence agencies say that they monitor several accounts everyday. However they would expect Twitter to be more pro-active in their approach.
If Twitter could scan some of the accounts by themselves and take them down it would go a long way. Not everything is about free speech, the officer added.
Normally Twitter takes down an account only if there is a specific complaint. However in many cases, agencies have requested Twitter to keep some accounts active so that they could track down information.
Intelligence Bureau officials in India who have a tough time in keeping tabs on ISIS sympathetic accounts say that Twitter too must play a more pro-active role.
What does Twitter have to say?
Twitter feels that it is being wrongly accused of not doing enough. They state that the social media policy being followed by them is no different from the one the other mediums are following.
Twitter also says that they are actively working with agencies such as the FBI behind the scenes to curb the problem. This often goes unnoticed and hence it is wrong to suggest that they are not doing enough.