Microblogging site Twitter will now not only have a one-click ‘report abuse’ button, but it will also permanently suspend any account that engages in obscene or violent behaviour through abusive language, among other things. This, after Britain-based activist Caroline Criado-Perez recently received nasty posts, including rape and death threats, on the site.
While some in India, which happens to be the second most active user base of the site, feel that it’s a positive move, others believe it’s an unnecessary action that shows people are losing their sense of humour. Filmmaker Mahesh Bhatt supported the cause by retweeting the news within hours, and actor Raima Sen, who’s active on Twitter, also feels it’s a great initiative. “I think this is necessary. We are always subject to bad language (on Twitter),” she says.
Ironically, actor-filmmaker Kamal Rashid Khan aka KRK, who’s known for his rampant abusive posts and has been in news for tweeting about actor Bipasha Basu and Huma Qureshi’s physical assets, also supports the move. “Saying something about someone’s b**bs is not a gaali. I never use gaali (on Twitter),” says KRK. Filmmaker Pritish Nandy, however, feels that this new rule is regressive and will only make the platform more restrictive. “I think this regulation is for those who get easily offended or who have things to hide and are scared of certain issues being raised on a public platform,” he says.
In the past, actors Shah Rukh Khan and Aamir Khan have also gone off Twitter due to brickbats and abuses. Actor Imran Khan, too, quit the medium three years ago. “I think Twitter is lowly and cheap and I see no reason to join it (back),” Khan told us.
I personally apologise to the women who have experienced abuse on Twitter .... we can’t decide what users do but we can improve our platform — A tweet by Tony Wang, general manager, Twitter UK
It’s a great initiative. We are always subject to bad language (on Twitter), just that we are too dignified to respond
Raima Sen, actor
Kisi ko gaali dena is not freedom of speech but badtameezi. I never use gaali (on Twitter)
Kamal Rashid Khan, actor
I think this is overreaction and succumbing to pressure. It’ll only make Twitter more restrictive
Pritish Nandy, filmmaker