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Korea Centers for Disease Control & Prevention Makes Twitter Private in Midst of Rising Concern Over MERS

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As Korea continues in a state of unease due to the rising numbers of MERS cases - currently numbering 35 - and those in quarantine - a number that has risen by 300 since yesterday to over 1600 - the Korea Centers for Disease Control & Prevention has protected its Twitter account (@KoreaCDC), effectively making it private and inaccessible, save for its current 1,628 followers. The population of South Korea is over 50 million, and capital city Seoul alone houses roughly 10 million.

In the current state where people are being punished for spreading rumors about MERS - 1 has been booked and 14 are being investigated - but information isn’t freely being given, rather than attempting to quell rumors with open communication and release of accurate information, they’ve shut their doors, supposedly to “update content and disease prevention methods.”

It’s a Twitter account…

They’ve stated that the account will open mid-day on June 4. As of 6:30 p.m. KST, @KoreaCDC remains closed.

Screenshots of the tweets by followers following the account change are being posted online:

“How could a government organization makes its account private?”

“Knock knock?”

The boss of ‘can’t see, can’t speak’ ethics.”

“It seems the Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is currently in self-quarantine.”

“Private? Are you kidding?”

@koreacdc private

Screenshots likewise give a glance into the state of the account before it was made private, and it seems criticism had been pouring pretty heavily onto the account.

SBS News reports that just in case the response to the account change was an overreaction and misunderstanding, they attempted to make contact, but were unable to do so even after several tries.

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