Twitter Launches New Tool To Combat Cyberbullies
Cyber-trolls have become a very real problem on many social media platforms. This week Twitter revealed a new tool aimed at helping its users to combat harassment and internet trolling.
Twitter already has a process that enables users to flag abusive or threatening content and tweets, and the new tool is to be incorporated into this. Users will be provided with an option to request a report giving details of the flagged tweet together with its URL, the user name of the person who posted it, and the time at which it was sent.
This report is aimed at law enforcement agencies. It would include a link to Twitter’s guidelines on how authorities are able to request non-public user account information. This move is intended to compel the authorities to take appropriate action against trolls and on-line stalkers. The user themselves would decide whether to notify the authorities and utilise the data contained within the report.
Twitter sought feedback during the new tool’s development process from various groups including the National Network to End Domestic Violence, an organisation that works towards ending violent crimes against women. Whilst trolling is not exclusively perpetrated against women, they are targeted on many gaming sites and via Twitter. It’s hoped that the new reporting tool could help in this area and might act as a deterrent.
Twitter has responded to the increasing problem of issues like impersonation and on-line abuse. The posting of revenge porn and obscene images that have been used without permission or stolen has been banned following a similar move by Reddit. The eagerly awaited new tool is to be rolled out worldwide for desktop in addition to mobile apps.
It’s reassuring to see that Twitter is taking the problem of cyber-trolling seriously and has made positive steps towards eradicating it from their platform. It is hoped that other social media giants will soon follow suit.
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