Twitter Inc (NYSE:TWTR) has responded to complaints from its viewers and reversed a change that ignited a firestorm. The micro-blogging site had changed its blocking feature, enabling the person who had been blocked to still tweet at the person who had blocked them. However, that tweet would just be invisible to the person who had received the tweet. Also whoever was blocked was not notified that they had been blocked.
Abuse via Twitter
According to Reuters, the old policy allowed Twitter users to keep people from either following them or interacting with their tweets. Also it notified users who had been blocked. Twitter Inc (NYSE:TWTR) said it was trying to protect people who felt like they were being harassed or abused on the site and who wanted to filter messages which are abusive but worried that blocking a user would result in retaliation.
Twitter users responded with numerous complaints to the change in the policy, and management said they decided to revert to the previous policy because they did not want people to feel “less safe.” Those who were angry about the policy change said all it did was blindfold the person who was blocking someone.
Twitter tries to control abuse
Twitter Inc (NYSE:TWTR) has been trying for months to find ways to crack down on abuse, particularly after two well-known women in the U.K. began receiving numerous rape and death threats. The social network said it was still having trouble with the blocking feature because many users were concerned that those who were harassing them would be notified that they had been blocked. Executives said they would continue exploring ways to protect users of the network from abuse and retaliation from blocking other users.
At this point Twitter has over 250 million users around the globe. If this episode is anything to go by, the micro-blogging site appears to be better than Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) at listening to the will of its users. Facebook users have complained in the past about sudden changes to the social network’s privacy practices, but those complaints have done little to change the company’s decisions.