New Twitter users spike after Olympics journalist gets suspended
6th Aug 2012 | 19:50
Bad press is still press
Last week it seemed like Twitter's luck had run out, with public perception of its Olympics partnership with NBC seemingly soiled by a misstep involving a U.S. journalist's Twitter account.
However, the incident garnered so much press for Twitter that the company's fail whale turned its frown upside down as new users flocked to the social networking service.
The incident involved U.S.-living, U.K.-employed journalist Guy Adams, whose tweets critical of NBC's Olympics coverage climaxed when he spurred his followers to email an NBC executive - and publicly tweeted his email address.
Twitter came under fire when they responded to NBC's subsequent complaint by suspending Adams' Twitter account, but it turns out the micro-blogging platform benefitted from the move as well.
A silver lining
According to a published report, sources described a "silver lining" to the scandalous affair, calling it "a good thing" overall.
Between the Olympics and all the publicity, bad or not, it's no wonder Twitter's user base has grown the past week.
Not to mention the controversy caused when British diver Tom Daley was assaulted via tweet for his Olympics performance's alleged "letting down" of his deceased father.
That incident even caused the offending tweeter to be arrested, though he later apologized.
Is the damage done?
Until now, Twitter has managed to maintain an image as a haven of free speech, refusing to censor its users even during major political and violent conflicts.
But apparently they draw the line when a journalist stirs the public into flooding the inbox of a partner company's executive.
Twitter cited their policies regarding individuals' privacy, though it's debatable whether the email address of a publicly traded company's executive should be considered private to begin with.
Twitter hid an apology of sorts in a blog post, though all this talk of silver linings seems to imply that the only lesson the company learned is that there's no such thing as bad press.