Twitter has apologised after a team working with US broadcaster NBC flagged up a critical tweet made by The Independent's Los Angeles correspondent Guy Adams – admitting it was 'not acceptable and undermines the trust our users have in us".
Adams' Twitter account was suspended after he posted a series of critical tweets about NBC's coverage of the Olympics.
One of them urged his followers to send their views to Gary Zenkel, the president of NBC Olympics, and Adams published his corporate email address.
A complaint was later filed by NBC, but NBC Sport's vice-president of communications, Christopher McCloskey, later revealed to The Daily Telegraph that it was in fact Twitter that first alerted the broadcaster to Adams's tweets.
Adams' account was reinstated last night.
Twitter and NBC entered into a partnership to cover to the Olympic Games this month, with the technology company featuring highlighted tweets from sports insiders in return for on-air promotions. It is understood that no money was exchanged in the deal.
Last night Twitter's general counsel Alex Macgillivray said: 'We've seen a lot of commentary about whether we should have considered a corporate email address to be private information.
'There are many individuals who may use their work email address for a variety of personal reasons â€” and some may not. Our Trust and Safety team does not have insight into the use of every user's email address, and we need a policy that we can implement across all of our users in every instance.
'That said, we want to apologise for the part of this story that we did mess up. The team working closely with NBC around our Olympics partnership did proactively identify a Tweet that was in violation of the Twitter Rules and encouraged them to file a support ticket with our Trust and Safety team to report the violation, as has now been reported publicly.
'Our Trust and Safety team did not know that part of the story and acted on the report as they would any other.
'As I stated earlier, we do not proactively report or remove content on behalf of other users no matter who they are. This behavior is not acceptable and undermines the trust our users have in us.
'We should not and cannot be in the business of proactively monitoring and flagging content, no matter who the user is â€” whether a business partner, celebrity or friend. As of earlier today, the account has been unsuspended, and we will actively work to ensure this does not happen again.