Twitter reviews controversial new privacy policy

Twitter Privacy

The anti-doxing policy on the platform has been used as a weapon by the far-right, with the result that many anti-fascist activists have been banned from their accounts.

Twitter is examining a controversial policy that penalises users who share images of other users without their consent.
In a statement, Twitter said that the company was conducting an “internal review” of the policy after making several mistakes in enforcement.

“After this was rolled out, we became aware of a significant amount of coordinated and malicious reports and unfortunately, our enforcement teams made several errors,” said Twitter spokesperson Trenton Kennedy.

“We’ve corrected those errors and are undergoing an internal review to make certain that this policy is used as intended – to curb the misuse of media to harass or intimidate private individuals.”

The announced policy is designed to protect users from doxing and harassment, two common problems on the platform.

The platform now allows users to report other users who are tweeting “private media not available elsewhere on the Internet as a tool to harass, intimidate, and reveal their identity.” If the review concludes that the complaint is substantiated and the image was not used in journalistic or public interest, these accounts are deactivated.

Activists were quick to warn that published policies would backfire. Activists argued that the policy was unclear and had been developed without much input from communities most at risk of harassment and doxing.

They didn’t believe in Twitter’s reporting and appeals process, which they described as unreliable, automated, and allowed for little discussion of enforcement.

Matthew Giannelis

Secondary editor and executive officer at Tech Business News. Contracting as an IT support engineer for 20 years Matthew has a passion for sharing his knowledge of the technology industry. He's also an advocate for global cyber security matters.

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