Twitter Clarifies Rules on Harassment And Deleted Accounts

Twitter Clarifies Rules on Harassment And Deleted Accounts

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Following criticism that Twitter accounts supported ISIS recruitment, the social media platform has clarified its rules on harassment and banned content.

Twitter can be quite the conflicted social media platform at times. While it's a great open forum which facilitates direct communication on the Internet, that open model also makes it home to some of the worst excesses of online abuse and harassment - up to and including an actual ISIS recruitment campaign. In response to such concerns, Twitter has clarified what it considers violent and abusive behavior while updating its rules regarding banned content and deleted accounts.

"The updated language emphasizes that Twitter will not tolerate behavior intended to harass, intimidate, or use fear to silence another user's voice," Twitter Director of Trust and Safety Megan Christina wrote. "As always, we embrace and encourage diverse opinions and beliefs - but we will continue to take action on accounts that cross the line into abuse."

Twitter's updated rules don't mention ISIS explicitly, but provide a more detailed definition of what constitutes online abuse. Where prior rules contained vague definitions for threats and violence, these new terms state "you may not promote violence against or directly attack or threaten other people on the basis of race, ethnicity, national origin, sexual orientation, gender, gender identity, religious affiliation, age, disability or disease."

As of writing, there are no stated changes to Twitter's enforcement practices, but Christina follows up with a brief summary of tools used to block, mute, and report abusive posts. "One of the areas we've found to be effective in this multi-layered strategy of fighting abuse is creating mandatory actions for suspected abusive behavior," she continues, "such as email and phone verification, and user deletion of Tweets for violations. These measures curb abusive behaviour by helping the community understand what is acceptable on our platform."

Twitter was already working to revise its policies earlier this year, but the conversation changed when it was revealed that ISIS controlled 46,000 Twitter accounts from September to December of 2014. More recently, Congress proposed legislation that would force social media sites to disclose potential terrorist activity to federal agencies. While such updates were probably in the works anyway, it's certainly a good time for Twitter to clarify the difference between "freedom of expression" and "online abuse" before any legislation arrives.

That said, Twitter's rule changes aren't all about violence and harassment. They also describe how Twitter might respond to reports of individuals inflicting self-harm, such as contacting them directly and providing resources from mental health professionals.

Source: Twitter, via Toronto Sun

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They can claim it all they want, but we've long passed the point anyone who isn't hopelessly naive isn't aware of the fact it's purely politics that determine whether you're going to get banned. If you're in disagreement with a specific ideology, you'll be banned point blank, while being in agreement with it will allow you to threaten people all day long without fear. The only shocking thing about it seems to be the literalist interpretation of Islam seem to be included in the group that can get away with everything.

I actually have to wonder how a site like Twitter got popular in the first place. Even ignore the fact it has become a cancer of the internet, even before that happened I'm genuinely curious how its interface managed to make it popular.

Zontar:
I actually have to wonder how a site like Twitter got popular in the first place. Even ignore the fact it has become a cancer of the internet, even before that happened I'm genuinely curious how its interface managed to make it popular.

Probably because it satisfies modern society's hunger for contextless sound bites (or text bites, rather), and it also satisfies people's desire to derp out such trivialities to anyone who'll listen.

Oh, and there's also the way Twitter plays perfectly into the outrage culture that the internet today is plagued with.

I wonder what constitutes as an "attack", and the degree it is carried out with depending on who said it and who moderates it.
Common sense would dictate that common sense would apply, but it's not that common really.
As Iceforce said, Outrage culture is in effect.
Things can be taken out of context and especially with a conversation going in with each sentence being 140 chars or less.
I can see some flaws with each and every stated "insert protected group here".

Race: "Race make up 80% of prison population" discussion.
Ethnicity: See race..
National origin: So..you can no longer say that Americans in general are fat? Oohh, they missed one topic. ,)
Sexual orientation: Discussion about difference between Pedophilia and Ephebophilia?
Gender: Cis-scum?
Gender identity: Otherkin?
Religious affiliation: Can I still debunk..I mean debate fairy tales at all now?
Age: Can I tell a minor they are too young to be on there?
Disability: Hmmm..Too tired to think of something.
Disease: How does HIV/AIDS spread and are breast cancer or prostate cancer more common and deadly?

I think it more a form of covering themselves and shotgunning it. As per usual.

IceForce:

Zontar:
I actually have to wonder how a site like Twitter got popular in the first place. Even ignore the fact it has become a cancer of the internet, even before that happened I'm genuinely curious how its interface managed to make it popular.

Probably because it satisfies modern society's hunger for contextless sound bites (or text bites, rather), and it also satisfies people's desire to derp out such trivialities to anyone who'll listen.

eh, the first things I ever heard about twitter were just the special deals and announcements you could get out alot more easily than you could with every other social media account at the time(like seriously, I wouldn't be surprised if somebody told me the reason the place I work at gets repeat business is because of the first month of special deals and theme days you only heard of from twitter).

As an idea, it's fucking genius, too bad there's alot of bullshit going on in the background. Facebook might sell your account info, but at least they don't get rid of you because you had the nerve to tell someone you hoped they banged their small toe on a hard wood after two hours of death threats with no repercussions...they just get rid of you for having a funny name.

Oh and criticism is also harassment.... as shown again and again by twitter in the past. But only if said critisism is directed at professional victims and "free lance" feminists.

If youre on the other side and on the receiving end... tough luck buddy.. twitter cant help you with that. Twitter only protects special snowflakes and arseholes aslong as they lean with the SJW crowd. But as Briana Wu lately found out the wind can change pretty quickly in SJW valley... one wrong statement and suddenly youre the one getting hit in the face with their rhetoric. And unlike with the usual suspects who are to blame for everything in this case twitter wont help you. After all the perpetual offended are aparantly the only big group of people left who still regularly use twitter for all i know.

IceForce:

Zontar:
I actually have to wonder how a site like Twitter got popular in the first place. Even ignore the fact it has become a cancer of the internet, even before that happened I'm genuinely curious how its interface managed to make it popular.

Probably because it satisfies modern society's hunger for contextless sound bites (or text bites, rather), and it also satisfies people's desire to derp out such trivialities to anyone who'll listen.

Oh, and there's also the way Twitter plays perfectly into the outrage culture that the internet today is plagued with.

the most amusing thing I've found about twitter is just who is the shitposter and who isn't.
Ice T? Talk'n heavy politics.
Mike Tyson? Only uses it to update public appearances and photo ops.
Nick Culmer? Posted sneaky pictures he took at a 15th century vanitas art gallery. (actually got him banned, lol, cuz yanno, you're kinda...not supposed to do that.)
Politicians? Taking snapshots of each other picking their noses and "accidentally" sending dick pictures to the wife of a rival candidate, also sometimes throwing racial slurs at one another like when all the Italian politicians dogpiled a judge calling him a gorilla.
Paul Zaloom? (Beakman's World) Posted a picture of his cat scratching up his butt.
Respected and revered film critic John Puccio? spent the first thousand or so tweets posting pictures of himself and his son 'teabagging noobs' in FPSes, before deciding to delete everything and go fully "professional"
It turns all the 10 year old boys into boring 50 year olds, and all the 50 year olds into 10 year old boys!
And for the love of all sanity don't even look at Graham Linehan's twitter.
It quite literally IS "Old man yells at cloud"

I have my own slogan for Twitter. It goes, Twitter:It's useless anyway.

Lets be honest, inflammatory bullshit is all that site was ever meant for. The fact that every "journalist" writes stories based on Tweets should prove it to everyone. The internet would be a better place without it. The fact that the standard news networks use it to maintain their relevancy only reveals them as little more than glorified tabloid shows.

rembrandtqeinstein:
These rules are the same as the rules for any moderated forum including this one.

"You can say whatever you want as long as what you say doesn't inconvenience the forum owner, or rustle the jimmies of anyone with moderation power. Then you will get kicked out and we will publicly pretend it has something to do with an overly broad and open ended set of 'rules'"

Kinda funny, don't you think? 4chan (i think) thought of the rules of the Internet fuck knows when - 2016 and we still use them)

My concern, much like others here, is that disagreements on specific subjects that do not appear to stray into abuse will see users banned and speech shut down.

One of the schools of thought that I find peculiar around all of this is about 'people abusing their rights', as though there is an intended way to use a right, which actually negates the notion of a right. There is currently a trend to clamp down on free speech to prevent presumed or even potential victimisation and offense.

We can just look at the peculiar trial in Canada to see that society doesn't know how to square free expression and modern equality schools of thought.
http://news.nationalpost.com/full-comment/christie-blatchford-the-twitter-trial-of-gregory-elliott-is-becoming-much-like-twitter-itself-shrill-and-uber-sensitive

I just use it to post stupid and somewhat hilarious shit like this:

https://twitter.com/Drive_the_Tacos/status/682259378322325504

https://twitter.com/Drive_the_Tacos/status/682260562168811520

And if you do just that, then I believe twitter will be a better place.

I really, really hope twitter tanks and sinks one day in the near future.

And at mods; don't you think it's not only ironic and obvious to warn rembrandtweinstein for his post? Or was that a joke? Because I genuinely laughed a bit. Good one! :D

I honestly think it might do some good. The policies themselves are horrific speech-policing, but maybe now all these hypersensitive jackasses will feel ignored to the point of being bored of their own circlejerk rhetorics and give up on them for a bit.
If no one challenges them, no one will take them seriously either.

Maybe that's naive, but I hope that'll be the case.

So, hiring terrorists and people who tweet "death to the west" is fine.
Someone mentions GG with nothing violating terms, and the account is shut down over guilt by association.

What a farce!! If that rumor about the head of Twitter beating his wife is true and I'd start looking for their investors and demand a boycott.

Fanghawk:

Twitter's updated rules don't mention ISIS explicitly, but provide a more detailed definition of what constitutes online abuse. Where prior rules contained vague definitions for threats and violence, these new terms state "you may not promote violence against or directly attack or threaten other people on the basis of race, ethnicity, national origin, sexual orientation, gender, gender identity, religious affiliation, age, disability or disease."

<...> More recently, Congress proposed legislation that would force social media sites to disclose potential terrorist activity to federal agencies. While such updates were probably in the works anyway, it's certainly a good time for Twitter to clarify the difference between "freedom of expression" and "online abuse" before any legislation arrives.

Thats pretty big. They just said they will ban all misanthropists that infest twitter. Though im not aware of them actually doing it. maybe i should just give them time.

Given what in US is considered "potential terrorist activity" they may as well go out and say that they are spying on everyone.

Naldan:

And at mods; don't you think it's not only ironic and obvious to warn rembrandtweinstein for his post? Or was that a joke? Because I genuinely laughed a bit. Good one! :D

discussing moderation is against this forums rules. Everything was done "by the book".

I wonder how they're defining "self-harm"? I mean, "I plan to shoot myself" or "I cut myself until the pain stops" seem pretty obvious, but what about a pattern of binge-drinking? There are a thousand and one stories of Facebook posts along those lines getting people in trouble; I don't doubt there are similar stories originating from Twitter.

Twitter may be setting itself up to fail. Either they're contemplating some sort of bot network that's likely to get a ton of false positives, or they're looking at an army of soon-to-be-burned out mods.

Callate:
I wonder how they're defining "self-harm"? I mean, "I plan to shoot myself" or "I cut myself until the pain stops" seem pretty obvious, but what about a pattern of binge-drinking? There are a thousand and one stories of Facebook posts along those lines getting people in trouble; I don't doubt there are similar stories originating from Twitter.

Honestly, I don't think it'd be utilized in any way other than the obvious, physical harm situations. I mean, if it was ANY kind of self-harm, then surely the confirmation that you're on twitter at all would apply? *rimshot*

Zontar:
They can claim it all they want, but we've long passed the point anyone who isn't hopelessly naive isn't aware of the fact it's purely politics that determine whether you're going to get banned. If you're in disagreement with a specific ideology, you'll be banned point blank, while being in agreement with it will allow you to threaten people all day long without fear. The only shocking thing about it seems to be the literalist interpretation of Islam seem to be included in the group that can get away with everything.

I actually have to wonder how a site like Twitter got popular in the first place. Even ignore the fact it has become a cancer of the internet, even before that happened I'm genuinely curious how its interface managed to make it popular.

I have a feeling if there was some kind of anti Islam rebel group recruiting on Twitter the hypocrites would ban them immediately fucking pigs

"Twitter will not tolerate behavior intended to harass, intimidate, or use fear to silence another user's voice"

Sounds like they'll have to ban most feminists if they're going to implement that.... Wouldn't be bad to see most anti-semitic and pro-palestinian accounts go either. The systematic hatespeech campaign by 'Pallywood' is responsible for most anti-semitic racism throughout the western world, so shutting it down can't hurt.

themutantlizard:
I have a feeling if there was some kind of anti Islam rebel group recruiting on Twitter the hypocrites would ban them immediately fucking pigs

Untrue. Islamophobic hatemongers have held Twitter accounts for years on end. Sometimes posting clear racist messages, and not getting banned.

A local branch of the racist PVV party in the Netherlands for example linked to a story of a terrorist arson attack on an asylum seekers centre in Sweden and added "Nice. This should be done everywhere. Parasite-shelter in Sweden goes up in flames". The tweet remained, the account has not been banned, police are investigating possible charges for racist hatespeech and language that incites violence.

themutantlizard:

Zontar:
They can claim it all they want, but we've long passed the point anyone who isn't hopelessly naive isn't aware of the fact it's purely politics that determine whether you're going to get banned. If you're in disagreement with a specific ideology, you'll be banned point blank, while being in agreement with it will allow you to threaten people all day long without fear. The only shocking thing about it seems to be the literalist interpretation of Islam seem to be included in the group that can get away with everything.

I actually have to wonder how a site like Twitter got popular in the first place. Even ignore the fact it has become a cancer of the internet, even before that happened I'm genuinely curious how its interface managed to make it popular.

I have a feeling if there was some kind of anti Islam rebel group recruiting on Twitter the hypocrites would ban them immediately fucking pigs

Oh come on, please at least stick to reality for judging the horrible free speech apocalypse of multi-factor verification, and a moderation policy update, on a private site with no obligation to host you.

There's plenty of your *edit* preferred stripe of bigot on Twitter too, racists, xenophobes, misogynists, and people who just hate muslims (Though half the time they seem to be the first three as well) alongside the bigots at IS.

The sad thing was, that Anonymous ended up going after the IS twitter presence first. That's fucking pathetic Twitter.

Strazdas:

discussing moderation is against this forums rules. Everything was done "by the book".

I think it's more likely that he got it because he full on insulted the mods, and lied about how they do their job.

sheppie:
"Twitter will not tolerate behavior intended to harass, intimidate, or use fear to silence another user's voice"

Sounds like they'll have to ban most feminists if they're going to implement that.... Wouldn't be bad to see most anti-semitic and pro-palestinian accounts go either. The systematic hatespeech campaign by 'Pallywood' is responsible for most anti-semitic racism throughout the western world, so shutting it down can't hurt.

themutantlizard:
I have a feeling if there was some kind of anti Islam rebel group recruiting on Twitter the hypocrites would ban them immediately fucking pigs

Untrue. Islamophobic hatemongers have held Twitter accounts for years on end. Sometimes posting clear racist messages, and not getting banned.

A local branch of the racist PVV party in the Netherlands for example linked to a story of a terrorist arson attack on an asylum seekers centre in Sweden and added "Nice. This should be done everywhere. Parasite-shelter in Sweden goes up in flames". The tweet remained, the account has not been banned, police are investigating possible charges for racist hatespeech and language that incites violence.

These people are not racist they are fighting against an evil religious ideology have you ever read Sam Harris's books ? What the swedes are doing is the right thing they are fighting for thier freedom against an invasion trying to push Islamic ideology on the world

themutantlizard:
These people are not racist they are fighting against an evil religious ideology have you ever read Sam Harris's books ? What the swedes are doing is the right thing they are fighting for thier freedom against an invasion trying to push Islamic ideology on the world

Uhm, you basically just said that trying to burn people in their homes for being Muslims, is a good thing and 'fighting for your freedom'.

Seriously, reconsider....

Callate:
I wonder how they're defining "self-harm"? I mean, "I plan to shoot myself" or "I cut myself until the pain stops" seem pretty obvious, but what about a pattern of binge-drinking? There are a thousand and one stories of Facebook posts along those lines getting people in trouble; I don't doubt there are similar stories originating from Twitter.

Twitter may be setting itself up to fail. Either they're contemplating some sort of bot network that's likely to get a ton of false positives, or they're looking at an army of soon-to-be-burned out mods.

Anyways, this rhetoric doesn't go beyond being amusing. I stopped finding actual "self-harm" tweets amusing long time ago...

themutantlizard:

sheppie:

themutantlizard:
These people are not racist they are fighting against an evil religious ideology have you ever read Sam Harris's books ? What the swedes are doing is the right thing they are fighting for thier freedom against an invasion trying to push Islamic ideology on the world

Uhm, you basically just said that trying to burn people in their homes for being Muslims, is a good thing and 'fighting for your freedom'.

Seriously, reconsider....

If they support sharia law they should either be deported or killed have you heard about the no go zones in cities in Europe this was before the migrant crisis too are you willfully blind?

I remember that, I also remember where that claim came from and how it was basically pulled out of Robert Emerson's ass. The man claimed that the entire city of Birmingham in England was a Muslim no-go zone, as well as claiming that dearborn Michigan had instated sharia law, which also turned out to be completely false.

So false, that he ended up retracting his statements and apologizing as well as prompting two separate on-air retractions and apologies from the Fox News shows he had appeared on.

Since that retraction and apology, there has been no concrete evidence for the existence of "no-go zones" in either Europe or the U.S., there are areas with high Muslim populations and reports of crimes committed in those areas that are motivated by attempts to enforce religious law, but police still go into those areas and enforce European or American law, they are still treated as crimes and arrested accordingly. Snopes has a history of where the concept came from, as well as its subsequent debunking and retraction.

Loonyyy:

Strazdas:

discussing moderation is against this forums rules. Everything was done "by the book".

I think it's more likely that he got it because he full on insulted the mods, and lied about how they do their job.

so saying that moderators and site owners can do what they want on their own site is an insult to the mods? how is your post to themutantlizard different then? you did tell him they can ban him for whatever they want as well.

CaitSeith:

Anyways, this rhetoric doesn't go beyond being amusing. I stopped finding actual "self-harm" tweets amusing long time ago...

wait, people still think that "go kill yourself" memes are actual self-harm encouragement? talk about lack of perspective....

themutantlizard:
If they support sharia law they should either be deported or killed

So you actually incite to hatred and violence....

themutantlizard:
have you heard about the no go zones in cities in Europe this was before the migrant crisis too are you willfully blind?

Yep, I heard that neonazis have invented the lie that there is such a thing as a "Muslim no go zone".

In which the fact that they speak of "Europe" as a country already shows it originated from American Christian evangelicals who, obviously, hate other religions and their followers. It's just rubbish from Stormfront or similar Christian anti-islamic sites.

Twitter is good for two things, short announcements you need to reach out for people and getting in arguments with other people online because 140 characters isn't enough for a proper conversation. The best thing they could possibly do is ban anybody trying to have a conversation directly on twitter, I'm pretty sure that would clear up so much shit its not even funny.

themutantlizard:
Still if you support sharia law you should be deported or shot dead Muslims who are openly against sharia can stay am I right also can you provide a link to where you read that article?

I see this as a violently racist opinion, I consider it hate speech. If you are American then surely you believe that everyone has the right to free expression and the right to practice their religion. Suggesting that someone should be murdered because of their religion, and yes supporting Sharia law is a religious view, is horrific. You're basically calling for a genocide because you are scared of something you don't believe.

What is it about Sharia law that you are afraid of? A lot of it is just to handle disputes and things, not too different to any other religion. You mention that there are no-go areas in Europe but they don't exist. The idea seems to have come from a Fox News programme which had a guest that said that the city of Birmingham was a no-go area for non-muslims - this is completely false! Fox News put out an on-air apology over the claim. http://www.theguardian.com/media/2015/jan/18/fox-news-apologises-terror-pundit-birmingham-muslim-comments.

Please don't come to these forums with ignorance, hatred and bigotry.

 

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