Twitter agrees to shutter some accounts, Turkey says

The company will not, however, open an office in Turkey just yet, despite requests from the Turkish government.

Screenshot by CNET

A recent trip to Turkey has helped Twitter alleviate some tensions with the country, but more conversations and deals will be required before both parties are satisfied with their relationship, a new report suggests.

A Twitter delegation, led by head of global public policy Colin Crowell, met Monday with Turkish government officials to hash out a mutually beneficial agreement that would throw cold water on the problems between the parties. According to Reuters, which earlier reported on the talks, Turkey said that Twitter will close offending accounts but hasn't agreed to set up an office in Turkey, as the government requested.

The trouble between the companies dates back to March when members of Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan's inner circle blocked Twitter and YouTube after politcally damaging audio clips were leaked to the sites. While YouTube is still blocked in Turkey, Twitter's ban was lifted less than two weeks after the incident, following worldwide condemnation.

It's not clear which accounts will be shuttered by Twitter, but the company has also agreed to consider closing future accounts that have been specified by a court.

That Twitter has yet to agree to opening an office in Turkey is a sticking point that might not go away. Turkey argues that Twitter generates tens of millions of dollars in advertising revenue in the country, but doesn't pay any taxes on it. The Turkish government wants Twitter to open an office in the country to enable the collection of those taxes.

CNET has contacted Twitter for comment on the account closures and the discussion between the company and Turkey. We will update this story when we have more information.

Twitter shares are up 28 cents, or 0.7 percent, to $41.15 in pre-market trading on Tuesday.

About the author

Don Reisinger is a technology columnist who has covered everything from HDTVs to computers to Flowbee Haircut Systems. Besides his work with CNET, Don's work has been featured in a variety of other publications including PC World and a host of Ziff-Davis publications.


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