Twitter continues to work to deal with the rampant abuse and harassment on the site – and it’s an uphill battle. This sort of behavior has always existed on Twitter, but for the past year or so, a brighter spotlight has been shone than ever before. Twitter admitted that it sucks a dealing with this, and has pledged over and over again to be working on fixing it.
Twitter’s recently unveiled some new policies and tools to help users combat and report abuse, as well as to make it a bit harder for trolls to troll. The newest step is the launch of a centralized hub where users can learn how to use said tools – a new Safety Center.
“The Safety Center is a resource for anyone to learn about online safety, on Twitter and beyond. This resource is a result of our work with online safety experts who continuously help us to promote good digital citizenship. We’re excited to make this knowledge easily accessible to you via this new site. The Safety Center is organized around Twitter’s tools and policies to address your safety, with sections created especially for teens, parents and educators,” says Twitter Head of Global Trust & Safety Outreach Patricia Cartes.
Over the past few months, Twitter has taken some small steps to help curb harassment. It tripled the team that handles reports of harassment, and began asking suspended users to verify a phone number and delete offending tweets before reinstatement. It updated its policies to specifically ban revenge porn and other content posted without a user’s consent. It made reporting threats to the police a little easier. It implemented a new notifications filtering option. Twitter has has also delpoyed a new algorithm to try to reign in abuse on the site. Twitter is currently working on a way to automatically detect abusive tweets – using indicators like account age and a tweet’s similarity to previously-flagged tweets. And last month, Twitter made it easier to block a bunch of users at the same time.
“Your online safety is a shared responsibility, and digital citizenship is essential to fostering a safe environment for all. As Twitter evolves along with the world of online safety, we will continue to create new materials for the Safety Center. And since we are a global community, in the coming weeks the Safety Center will be translated into some of the most-used languages on Twitter and even more languages over time. We will continue to work with our partners around the world to bring the most useful information to the Twitter community,” says Cartes.
Groundbreaking stuff? Hardly. But you have to give Twitter credit for trying, and not letting the issue fade into the background.