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Twitter testing new feature that will 'automatically' identify, limit abusive tweets

social media Updated: Apr 22, 2015 15:36 IST


In a bid to address issues of threats, abuse, and harassment on its platform, Twitter is testing a slew of new features including, one that will identify and limit abusive tweets on its own and is also expanding the definition of prohibited behaviour.

According to The Verge, the social media site's policy prohibiting violent threats will not just cover "direct, specific threats of violence against others" but also "threats of violence against others or promoting violence against others."

Shreyas Doshi, the company's director of product management, said that the previous policy was "unduly narrow" and restricted the site's ability to act on certain kinds of threatening behaviour. The change is expected to give them more scope to tackle online threats.

Twitter is also introducing extra tools to deal with violations, including one that would allow members of staff to lock abusive accounts for extended periods of time.

This tool will be available in addition to another tool that forces users to delete abusive tweets or verify their account with a phone number.

Another new feature that is being tested right now will help the platform in identifying abusive tweets and "limit their reach" on the service. The tool will employ a number of criteria, such as, the age of the account, since trolls frequently start new accounts to abuse or threaten someone, and whether or not a tweet is similar to those previously identified as abusive by moderators.

The feature will however, not limit your ability to see content that you've explicitly sought out, Doshi said. He added that it will not tag tweets as abusive simply because they are "controversial or unpopular."