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Following a recent string of high-profile stories centered around cruel tweets, Twitter is said be gearing up to launch a new tweet moderation feature that will let users filter content they see by using keywords (via Bloomberg). Any subsequent tweet with the specifically designated harmful words would be blocked from the user's timeline and invisible to them, but still posted for anyone else to see.

The anti-harassment tool is said to have been in production "for about a year" at the company, and is still not quite ready for a wide rollout yet. The news comes from a group of people close to the project, and is most likely gaining traction after a particularly public year of unfortunate incidents surrounding the social network, where both reporters and celebrities were attacked on the service.

twitter-harassment-tool-800x277.jpg
Twitter needs to attract and retain users as the growth in their numbers slows. The company has spent the past few months consulting with an outside council of anti-harassment groups about its strategy for addressing the issue, which has become one of Chief Executive Officer Jack Dorsey's top priorities.

Twitter took some small steps this year, such as making it easier for people to report abuse by letting them identify multiple offending tweets while filing their complaints. But the keyword tool, if implemented, would be the first to give users more control over what they see instead of blocking individual users after they attack.
Twitter and CEO Jack Dorsey have attempted to make inroads towards creating a less harmful atmosphere on the social network, but as yet haven't created an in-depth feature that could help prevent bullying on a wider scale. The potential keyword blocking solution sounds similar to one that Instagram is also reportedly planning to launch soon, which will let users filter out the comment section on their photos because "different words or phrases are offensive to different people."

The news comes after Twitter reported its slowest revenue growth since 2013, thanks to the growing popularity of rival companies Snapchat and Instagram. To turn things around, Twitter plans to focus on five key areas within its network, one of which will focus on keeping users safe from online abuse: core services, live-streaming video, the site's "creators and influencers," safety, and developers.

Eventually, the new anti-harassment tool could become a universal filtering feature for content not just potentially harmful, "for example, users could block a hashtag about an event they don't care to read about." If true, the Twitter desktop and mobile apps would be playing catch-up to features currently implemented in popular third-party clients, like Tweetbot on iOS and OS X. That app has a feature-rich "Mute Filters" section that allows users to silence any user, keyword, hashtag, and client, all packed with settings to add contingencies like mute locations and duration.

Note: Due to the political nature of the discussion regarding this topic, the discussion thread is located in our Politics, Religion, Social Issues forum. All forum members and site visitors are welcome to read and follow the thread, but posting is limited to forum members with at least 100 posts.

Article Link: Twitter Working on Anti-Harassment Tool With Keyword Blocking Abilities
 

aaronvan

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Twitter and CEO Jack Dorsey have
attempted to make inroads
towards creating a less harmful atmosphere on the social network, but as yet
haven't created
an in-depth feature that could help prevent bullying on a wider scale.​

Ah yes, let's make Twitter a safe space. :rolleyes:

No one asked for this.

Unfortunately, many sensitive snowflakes are crying for exactly this. You know, because unfollowing or muting someone is too much work for their fragile psyches...

Edit: especially Leo LaPorte. That guy complains about Twitter non-stop.
 
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garirry

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Now I can finally block all the posts of the idiots that complain about random crap all the time or claim to be pansexual or whatever they call it these days.
 

now i see it

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I think that this is a really [...] idea. Leave it up to a [...] service like Twitter to finally put an end the [...] [...] who are [...] [...] [...].
 
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cfedu

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The article said it was placed here due to the political discussion. Almost every MR article has a social component. I don't see what's so special about this one. But meh.


It's political because regressive leftists like to censor any speech they do not agree with. Jack thinks this will help grow Twitter but IMO it will do the opposite, I closed my account when they banned Milo.
 

Mascots

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No one asked for this.

I'm sorry, but the special little snowflake argument isn't relevant when you have hordes of people attacking others in such an abusive way and for absolutely no reason other than conflicting opinion. The Internet, and our position in it, is a part of many people's identities. I understand the thought of censoring stuff just because you don't like it is stupid, but this goes beyond that and Twitter is losing credibility and users because of it.

A lot of people are tired of filtering messages that say, "****ing go kill yourself". I can deal with "Hillary is the devil" all day - but creating space between those who are placing all of their effort in trying to destroy a person for no reason (other than a disagreement) is paramount at this point.
 

GeneralChang

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Twitter is in a position to do a lot in regards to shutting down trolls, and this could help improve the quality of the discourse on the service. Let's just hope these changes don't also shut down legitimate criticism. As long as it's configurable and opt-in, there's a chance it'll work out for the best.
 
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cfedu

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I'm sorry, but the special little snowflake argument isn't relevant when you have hordes of people attacking others in such an abusive way and for absolutely no reason other than conflicting opinion. The Internet, and our position in it, is a part of many people's identities. I understand the thought of censoring stuff just because you don't like it is stupid, but this goes beyond that and Twitter is losing credibility and users because of it.

A lot of people are tired of filtering messages that say, "****ing go kill yourself". I can deal with "Hillary is the devil" all day - but creating space between those who are placing all of their effort in trying to destroy a person for no reason (other than a disagreement) is paramount at this point.


So why was Milo banned? Was he sending personal attacks to people telling them to go kill themselves? He was banned because people were butt hurt plain and simple.
 
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Mascots

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So why was Milo banned? Was he sending personal attacks to people telling them to go kill themselves? He was banned because people were butt hurt plain and simple.

Lol come on, really now? - I'm not even going to get into this argument because it has nothing to do with moderation tools to mute chunks of your stream related to certain words or motives. His banning has absolutely nothing to do with the content of this article other than affirming the issue with abuse on Twitter.

But I will add to that specific situation: If he was sowing disharmony in the community by egging people on, then Twitter has the right to attribute accountability to him.
 

DanGoh

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Apr 6, 2014
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Twitter is in a position to do a lot in regards to shutting down trolls, and this could help improve the quality of the discourse on the service. Let's just hope these changes don't also shut down legitimate criticism. As long as it's configurable and opt-in, there's a chance it'll work out for the best.

Agreed. Don't understand how people can get mad about this.
 

GeneralChang

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If you can't take the heat, get out of the kitchen.
And that's what people are doing. Which is terrible for Twitter from a business perspective, so now they're trying to put out the grease fire on the cooktop.

EDIT: I'm actually thinking that isn't the correct metaphor. It's more like they're now installing an air conditioner in the window that folks can choose to turn on if they don't like the heat, in order to get them to stay in the kitchen for all the good food and still be comfortable. Less evocative, but more accurate.

Also, I'm now wondering how far I can take this "Twitter is a kitchen" metaphor, and it's making me laugh. So thanks for that. :)
 

nagromme

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May 2, 2002
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I'm sorry, but the special little snowflake argument isn't relevant when you have hordes of people attacking others in such an abusive way and for absolutely no reason other than conflicting opinion. The Internet, and our position in it, is a part of many people's identities. I understand the thought of censoring stuff just because you don't like it is stupid, but this goes beyond that and Twitter is losing credibility and users because of it.

A lot of people are tired of filtering messages that say, "****ing go kill yourself". I can deal with "Hillary is the devil" all day - but creating space between those who are placing all of their effort in trying to destroy a person for no reason (other than a disagreement) is paramount at this point.

Also, people don't know what "censorship" vs "right to free speech" means.

Free speech means you are legally allowed to say something. It doesn't mean private companies have to give you a platform for it, and it doesn't mean anyone has to hear you. Start a competing company that is more flame-friendly if you like—and don't expect anyone to be forced to join.
 

TurboPGT!

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I'm sorry, but the special little snowflake argument isn't relevant when you have hordes of people attacking others in such an abusive way and for absolutely no reason other than conflicting opinion. The Internet, and our position in it, is a part of many people's identities. I understand the thought of censoring stuff just because you don't like it is stupid, but this goes beyond that and Twitter is losing credibility and users because of it.

A lot of people are tired of filtering messages that say, "****ing go kill yourself". I can deal with "Hillary is the devil" all day - but creating space between those who are placing all of their effort in trying to destroy a person for no reason (other than a disagreement) is paramount at this point.
No.
Get over it.
[doublepost=1472236007][/doublepost]
Also, people don't know what "censorship" vs "right to free speech" means.

Free speech means you are legally allowed to say something. It doesn't mean private companies have to give you a platform for it, and it doesn't mean anyone has to hear you. Start a competing company that is more flame-friendly if you like—and don't expect anyone to be forced to join.
The "private company" argument goes out the window when the platform in question is used to dominate PUBLIC knowledge and perception.

It is nothing but unwarranted censorship that is not asked for.

Meanwhile this same trash company allows ISIS to keep their recruiting pages up. But worries so much about people being mean to each other.

Read between the lines.
 

ksnell

macrumors 6502a
Aug 26, 2012
695
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I'm sorry, but the special little snowflake argument isn't relevant when you have hordes of people attacking others in such an abusive way and for absolutely no reason other than conflicting opinion. The Internet, and our position in it, is a part of many people's identities. I understand the thought of censoring stuff just because you don't like it is stupid, but this goes beyond that and Twitter is losing credibility and users because of it.

A lot of people are tired of filtering messages that say, "****ing go kill yourself". I can deal with "Hillary is the devil" all day - but creating space between those who are placing all of their effort in trying to destroy a person for no reason (other than a disagreement) is paramount at this point.

It depends what you are after. If you are looking for the real news, you need a medium that is not filtering or altering what is being said by society. The next step is Twitter will start doing the filtering for you, much like Facebook with its "curated news" and algorithms, which have already been proven to be biased.
 

sudo1996

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I've been scraping tweets from Twitter for several months. With lenient filters, more than half of it is spam. A lot of that spam is dirty. Most of the non-spam, judging by a human-size sample, is nearly unintelligible garbage like "that snapchat fam tho 100 its fridaaayy." The key is to follow the right people, I suppose.
[doublepost=1472238574][/doublepost]
I'm sorry, but the special little snowflake argument isn't relevant when you have hordes of people attacking others in such an abusive way and for absolutely no reason other than conflicting opinion. The Internet, and our position in it, is a part of many people's identities. I understand the thought of censoring stuff just because you don't like it is stupid, but this goes beyond that and Twitter is losing credibility and users because of it.

A lot of people are tired of filtering messages that say, "****ing go kill yourself". I can deal with "Hillary is the devil" all day - but creating space between those who are placing all of their effort in trying to destroy a person for no reason (other than a disagreement) is paramount at this point.
It's called ignoring them. "KYS" is a meme at this point in online games. If you take it seriously from random morons on Twitter, I don't know what to say.
 
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