When you have the wrong namesake: Twitter mistakes man for ISIS leader

An Arab Spring activist has raised a loud cry after his Twitter account was suspended following the mishap of administrators mistaking him for the leader of the so-called Islamic State. Iyad El-Baghdadi complained his account suffered suspension for about 30 mins. Mr El-Baghdadi was misidentified as IS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi.

Twitter mistook his identity

Twitter mistook his identity

The victim concerned here has Twitter followers whose number exceed 70,000 and even at times engages in mocking IS. Twitter made no comment.
Twitter of late made an update on its rules on “abusive behaviour and hateful conduct” in a move to improve on user experience. Twitter has been lambasted for not doing enough to halt the global terror of IS as the organisation makes use of the platform as to propaganda purposes.

Mr El Baghdadi revealed to BBC he got a message from Twitter stressing that he had “violated” its rules but not particularly pointing out the offence. He therefore accused Twitter of being racist. “I don’t think a single Arab country exists that doesn’t have a family with the surname El-Baghdadi,” he tweeted.

The activist, who also researches on the area of radicalization, said the alleged incident brought to limelight questions about Twitter’s security processes. He expatiated further that the company needed to be “more transparent” about the major reasons why people suffer suspension. Twitter should “engage power users who deal with trolls regularly”, he added. As we know Twitter does not make comments on individual users’ cases for privacy reasons.


He's an Associate at JustNaira. He loves to write about technology, business,sport and life, mixed with some randomness of what he would like to share. He's favorite activity is pretending that he can sing.

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