Twitter’s enforcement of its own rules around behaviour and harassment have become a hotbed of controversy in the past few months. Between the platform’s seemingly cavalier attitude towards the proliferation of bots to serve government propaganda, wide-spread harassment of minorities and women, and validation of neo-nazi mouthpieces through the “verification” process, many users are finding the platform to be an uncomfortable place.
In response to all this controversy, Twitter’s CEO, Jack Dorsey came out to propose some changes to Twiter’s userbase. To be clear, these changes have been in the works since 2016 or so he claims, and they will be going live over the next few weeks. In a stream of tweets, he acknowledges some element of wrongdoing and notes the recent protests and boycotts of the social media platform.
“Today we saw voices silencing themselves and voices speaking out because we’re *still* not doing enough.” Dorsey said “We decided to take a more aggressive stance on our rules and how we enforce them. [There will be]new rules around unwanted sexual advances, non-consensual nudity, hate symbols, violent groups, and tweets that glorifies violence.”
Twitter will also be taking a look into how it verifies “public” figures, especially controversial ones with little public value like Ms. Katie Hopkins. While the firm argues that verification is not an endorsement of any kind, verified users have access to filters, and get higher priority when readers read responses to threads. Verified users also tend to have high followerships, making it easier for some unscrupulous members of the Twitterati to point their followers towards others.
Twitter will be rolling out these changes over the following weeks, and Dorsey says to expect more on this in the coming week.