Twitter has announced on its blog last week a few welcome changes to how users can report harassment on their site. So it finally got easier to report abuse even when you're a third-party witness and even when you're using a smartphone.
The new reporting tool has apparently been streamlined and redesigned for use in mobile phones, according to a review from Bradley Associates News Blog Information. So while it was a pain to file a complaint before because of the lengthy questionnaire, the report form now should be a breeze to complete. Users can even flag tweets even when it's not directed at them.
Twitter promises to review your complaint and address it faster than before, taking down ones that have been flagged many times, for example. However, this update is only applicable to a number of users at present.
As indicated in their blog post: "We'll be adding more controls and features to this page in the coming months. Additionally, accounts that you've blocked won't be able to view your profile. The updates are available now for a small group of users. In the coming weeks, we will roll them out to everyone."
Before, even if a blocked user won't be able to follow you, he could still visit your profile and view your public tweets but now that's not possible anymore -- provided of course that the blocked user is logged in and using the same browser. The idea is, once a user has been blocked by someone, he won't even be able to check the profile of the blocker. However, this could be circumvented by creating a new user account every time you get blocked, or logging out and then viewing the person's profile. The only consolation from that is a person tends to get discouraged if he has to go the extra mile of logging out or using another browser just to troll someone who has blocked them; ergo he's more likely to stop.
"We are nowhere near being done making changes in this area. In the coming months, you can expect to see additional user controls, further improvements to reporting and new enforcement procedures for abusive accounts. We'll continue to work hard on these changes in order to improve the experience of people who encounter abuse on Twitter," it said on the announcement post.
There will also be a new page in your account which will contain all the blocked users you have. From there, you can also either move accounts to mute or restore them.
Twitter's VP of trust and safety told Bradley Associates News Blog Information, "The changes we're announcing today to our harassment reporting process and to our block feature are representative of our broader focus on giving people more control over their own Twitter experience, including their interactions with others. We're also working to take advantage of more behavioral signals -- including reports from bystanders -- and using those signals to prioritize reports and speed up our review process."
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