UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Volker Türk Saturday published an open letter urging Twitter owner Elon Musk to ensure that human rights are central to the management of Twitter. The letter noted that Twitter has been a force in the “global revolution” that has transformed how people communicate. Türk stressed how important the platform is because of its ability to “easily and effectively” connect people all around the world. Türk also stressed his “concern and apprehension about our digital public square and Twitter’s role in it.” He urged the company to respect human rights and to stand up for the rights of privacy and free expression to the full extent possible.
Türk shared six fundamental principles from a human rights perspective, in the hopes that Twitter might place them front and center going forward:
Protect free speech across the globe.
Free speech is not a free pass
There is no place for hatred that incites discrimination, hostility or violence on Twitter.
Transparency is key.
Languages and contextual expertise are not optional.
Türk’s comments come just one day after a group of former and current Twitter employees filed a class action lawsuit against the tech giant amid widespread.