A number of web users in Iran reported late on Monday that they could access Facebook and Twitter without restrictions, raising hopes that the authorities have finally lifted the filtering on the social networks.
It was not immediately clear whether Iran had in fact permanently unblocked access to the both websites or the opening was merely the result of service maintenance, something that has happened in the past. But recent news about the presence of Hassan Rouhani’s administration online has reinforced speculation that it could be different this time.
“I can access Facebook and Twitter both without VPN,” a citizen of Tehran told the Guardian, referring to virtual private networks used to bypass online censorship. But many other users said they still had problems connecting without help from proxy websites or VPN services.
Many users, conscious of their previous experiences, were cautious to celebrate prematurely, but others were already greeting each other. “God has freed Facebook,” many posted on their Facebook pages.