Iran Liberated From Cumbersome Twitter and Facebook Controls [Updated]

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A picture posted on Twitter's photo-sharing website TwitPic by the user shadishd173 allegedly shows supporters of Iran's defeated presidential candidate Mir Hossein Mousavi dressed in black during a mass protest on June 18, 2009 in Tehran as a mark of mourning for demonstrators killed in clashes during previous protests, which have been banned by the authorities, according to the user. Tens of thousands of Mousavi supporters demonstrated for a sixth straight day, keeping up the pressure on the Islamic regime over the disputed vote, witnesses told AFP. The rally came as the electoral watchdog, the Guardians Council, said it was investigating a total of 646 complaints of irregularities in the conduct of the poll from Mousavi and the other two losing candidates. Photo: SHADISHD173/AFP/Getty Images

Without making any kind of official statement, Iran on Monday quietly removed the Internet controls that blocked people from using Twitter and Facebook — controls that have been in place since violence followed the presidential election there in 2009. A lot of Iranians are already on Twitter and Facebook, so all the new development really meant was that they could skip a step when signing on to do their social networking. "Hurray, I came to Facebook without using VPN," posted one, per the New York Times. And sweet freedom stole over the land. Update: Aaand, they're blocked again. It was just a "technical glitch."