little green footballs

Some Ideas for Saving Twitter From Its Trolls

Thu, May 14, 2015 at 4:20:17 pm

Here's a good article with a list of eight ideas to Save Twitter From Its Trolls.

Everyone knows that Twitter has a serious, unsolved problem with abuse and harassment on its platform. I know it. Twitter knows it. If you're a frequent Twitter-user -- particularly a female -- you likely also know it, too, because according to the Pew Research Center, more than seven in 10 Internet users has witnessed online abuse.

Frustratingly, however, none of this mounting awareness seems to have resulted in substantive change. Yes, Twitter has recently streamlined its abuse reporting process and softened some of the language in its abuse policies. But after each and every reform rolls out, there's usually a backlash from activists and victims' advocacy groups, complaining that the new protections are too weak, or too cosmetic, or too easy to evade.

As if to further prove the point, a recent analysis of Twitter abuse by the group Women, Action and the Media! found that even when reports are vetted by a third-party group, Twitter takes action on only 55 percent of reported abuse.

Inspired by that unending cycle, we turned to a group of experts -- victims, advocates and academics -- to ask what concrete, anti-harassment tools they would introduce. The responses varied widely, from tweaks to Twitter's fundamental user-interface to entire about-faces in policy. Put them together, however, and you have a pretty clear vision of what a troll-free Twitter could be.

Read the whole thing.