Twitter Inc (NYSE:TWTR) has decided to honor requests to remove photos and videos of deceased family members. The decision comes in the wake of Zelda Williams’ traumatic experiences on the micro-blogging network after her father Robin Williams’ death. Some Twitter users posted disturbing photos of the late actor, and his daughter abandoned the micro-blogging platform as a result.
Twitter’s decision also comes at the same time as the death of James Foley, an American photojournalist who was killed by ISIS.
Twitter to work with family members
On Twitter’s support page this week, the micro-blogging platform said it will work with someone who is “authorized to act on behalf of the estate” or with an immediate family member whose identity has been verified. The company said upon a request from them, it will remove disturbing photos and deactivate the accounts of those who have died.
Twitter also said at the bottom that it might not be able to honor all requests to remove images, saying it will do so “in certain circumstances.” The company said the types of images family members may request be removed include “from when critical injury occurs to the moments before or after death.” Twitter added that it will consider “public interest factors such as the newsworthiness of the content and may not be able to honor every request.”
How to deactivate the Twitter account of a deceased person
In order to deactivate an account for a family member who passed away, Twitter requests several pieces of information and documents. The micro-blogging platform needs to know the username of the deceased person’s Twitter account and see a copy of the death certificate.
In addition, the company needs a copy of the family member’s government-issued identification and a signed statement including the person’s first and last name, email address, contact information and relationship to the deceased. The family member must also give a brief description of details that show the account belongs to their deceased relative if the name on the account doesn’t match the name that’s on the death certificate.
The company said those who wish to request that images be removed must send an email to email@example.com.