What do you use Twitter for? Keeping up to date with current events? Stalking your favourite actor? Updating the world on your mediocre morning drive to work? Harassing 12-year-old internet trolls? If your Twitter activity includes the latter, your time might be running up (and rightfully so).
On Tuesday (November 15), the social networking service company announced their new reporting tool and an improved mute feature.
Hate speech has always been against Twitter’s rules, and reporting Tweets is definitely not a new element, but this newly introduced option will allow users to report vicious content separately, making it easier to report hate speech to Twitter. Instead of saying something is “abusive” or “harassing,” the feature allows you to flag tweets as hateful.
Hate speech and harassment has inflated rapidly following Donald Trump’s US election win, and, according to the FBI, hate crimes against Muslims have reached an all-time high since 9/11.
— Gabe Ortíz (@TUSK81) November 10, 2016
Attacks of this nature is not limited to physical disputes; the amount of online bullying and digital harassment has sky rocketed, especially on Twitter. Anti-Semitic Twitter attacks also increased drastically, with millions of tweets targeting journalists covering the 2016 Presidential specifically.
Man starts aggressively yelling “crooked press” at our enclosure. Trump security and police officer rush the man and tell him to back off.
— Katy Tur (@KatyTurNBC) October 18, 2016
“The amount of abuse, bullying and harassment we’ve seen across the internet has risen sharply over the past few years,” Twitter wrote in a blog post on Tuesday. “These behaviours inhibit people from participating on Twitter, or anywhere. Abusive conduct removes the chance to see and share all perspectives around an issue, which we believe is critical to moving us all forward. In the worst cases, this type of conduct threatens human dignity, which we should all stand together to protect.”
We hope this new feature will help control the amount of hateful comments and racism/sexism that has been circling the Twittersphere.