Since its rise to popularity, Twitter has transformed from a simple platform for voicing thoughts and opinions to a battleground even for political debate. The social media portal has long been criticized for its tolerance towards offensive and abusive language, which has directly contributed to cyber bullying.
Most recently, Twitter faced severe backlash after they suspended the account of actress Rose McGowan when she spoke against Harvey Weinstein. They explained that it was because she tweeted out a private phone number, which violates their Terms of Service. But this is not a fair explanation, because Twitter fails to impose these rules when they find it inconvenient to do so. A fine example of this is their insistence to not suspend the account of President Donald Trump, even though he has potentially violated their Terms multiple times.
In the last 18 months, Twitter has introduced some tools to dissuade abuse on its platform, such as restrictions on offending accounts which includes a 12-hour ban. They also launched an automated ‘Quality filter’ which detects and eliminate questionable tweets from one’s timeline. But these moves have been feeble compared to the potential harm that can be caused on their platform.
With an aim of regaining public trust, Twitter has released a calendar of their planned upcoming changes, which addresses their policy towards people who violate their rules and how they will be enforcing them.
While these plans may curb the rage against Twitter right now, conscious users will be observing closely to see how these are actually implemented. Over the past year, all social media platforms have had to pull up their socks and take responsibility for their role in the world today. Facebook faced vicious fire for the amount of fake news that was circulated on the platform. Unless these companies put in as much thought into taking care of their community as they do towards expansion of profitability, it is likely that they will fall into the “Too Big to Fail” trap.