You can't read these tweets

Journalist, author and free speech advocate Nick Cohen was, for a while, a lively presence on Twitter. He gave up the highly addictive site to work on his latest book, a polemic on censorship called You Can’t Read This Book (as more than one reviewer has pointed out, you can and should read this book).

Book completed and published, Cohen set out on the promotional slog required of authors, and rejoined Twitter 10 days ago in order to plug his work. After a few tweets alerting real-world friends to his presence, Cohen found his account (@NickCohen2) suspended, without explanation.

Bemused, Cohen tried to set up a new account (@NickCohen4), using a different email address. Again, Cohen sent a few tweets before finding the account suspended within hours.

Cohen is yet to have an explanation of the suspensions.

The irony to a free speech advocate being blocked from the web is clear, not least as Cohen praises Twitter in his book. But the Observer columnist has had previous trouble with his online profile. Cohen’s Wikipedia page was subjected to repeated slanderous edits by “David Rose”, later outed on the Jack of Kent blog as Independent journalist Johann Hari, who had a very public falling out with Cohen in the pages of Dissent magazine. “David Rose” was found to have maliciously edited several other “enemies” Wikipedia pages, including that of Telegraph blogger (and former colleague of Hari at the New Statesman) Christina Odone.

Update (15:55, 16 March) @NickCohen4 is operational again