Twitter has banned a parody profile of Environment Minister Catherine McKenna for a second time, according to the account’s creator.
A screenshot posted on the latest version of the Catherine Mckenna parody (@mockennna) shows their previous account (@CatheeMckennna) had been permanently suspended on Wednesday.
Despite clearly identifying itself as a parody in the bio, Twitter considers it to be an impersonator.
The creator of the parody accounts informed True North that this suspension came without warning. The account was temporarily suspended prior to when Twitter claimed the account was an impersonation.
Despite making all the requested changes Twitter demanded of them, they were still suspended.
The creator also mentioned to True North that the old account had never been blocked by Minister McKenna’s office, but the new account was blocked immediately after it was created.
“Each social media platform has procedures in place that any verified user – of any party – can follow when they have been impersonated. Decisions on whether those accounts violate a platform’s Terms of Service are made solely at the discretion of the companies themselves,” McKenna’s Press Secretary told True North Centre.
“We all have a responsibility to protect our democracy and make sure our political debate is grounded in the facts.”
While Minister McKenna’s office did not comment as to whether or not they reported the parody account to Twitter, they had previously admitted to reporting the first iteration of the parody account last June.
The effort to censor a parody account is just one of many examples of the current government monitoring social media.
In 2017 Prime Minister Justin Trudeau reportedly told Facebook Executive Sheryl Sandberg that the social media giant needs to do more to address “fake news” or else face more regulations.
The government has just recently announced it will be spending $7 million on a campaign to tell Canadians what to believe online ahead of an election, alongside a new government task force to identify so-called “misinformation.”
Since rejoining Twitter as @mockennna on Wednesday, the McKenna parody has gotten nearly 2000 followers and plans to continue as before.