Serves me right for believing the MSM, but I should have checked more knowledgeable sources at sites such as the Technology Liberation Front. Turns out there is no evidence that the U.S. State Department requested Twitter delay its maintenance shutdown in order to keep the meesage service operating amid the Iranian election protests, as I noted yesterday. Cato's Jim Harper cites a Twitter corporate blog post that credits users with requesting the delay. My central point still stands: regulation of the Internet is a bad proposition because no one really knows where the next disruption is coming from. In Twitter's case this goes double -- its user population reacted far more quickly. Harper sums it up nicely:
People are free to speculate that the State Department asked Twitter to deny its involvement precisely to create the necessary appearances, but without good evidence of it, assuming that just reflects a pre-commitment that governments - not people and the businesses that serve them - are the primary forces for good in the world.