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Twitter, flame wars and trolls...

May 1, 2017

Twitter has a new (and possibly controversial) tactic of responding to “potentially abusive behaviour” to limit harassment on the platform. The social network is now enforcing 12-hour time-outs for accounts it deems to be “abusive” in some way. Throughout the duration of the timeout, the account’s tweets and activity will only be seen by those who follow them.


A Twitter spokesperson mentioned that the actual duration of the time-out could vary depending on what exactly got the account in trouble in the first place. Some users are expressing frustration with the new feature as they aren’t being given much of an explanation as to why they’re in hot water with the social network.

In one of its support articles, Twitter provides an explanation about the timeouts and their purpose to create a “safer environment.”


“Conversations are core to Twitter, but if we detect behaviour that may violate the Twitter Rules or inhibit other people’s ability to express themselves freely, we may temporarily limit certain account features.”

In addition to the 12-hour timeouts, Twitter has also implemented a few other steps to reduce abusive behaviour:

  • Removal of offensive tweets from search results

  • Keeping suspended users from creating new accounts

  • Hiding offensive or harassing @ replies

We think these are welcome changes at My Digital Hero however, there is a risk this new reporting system could be abused. If your business has been the victim of online trolling, check out our video “How to deal with online trolls”

What do you think? Have you been the victim of trolling in the past? If so, do you welcome these new changes? 



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