A few heavily requested features will soon be rolling out to Twitter, with one of them helping its users avoid spoilers for their favorite TV shows and films.
The new features are being rolled out today, as part of the social network’s incentive to attract new users and prevent its revenue from continuing to tumble. They will both grant users the ability to mute various tweets, with the intention being to prevent the online harassment that continues to plague the site, and to also ensure that users do not stumble upon tweets about topics they don’t want to read about, such as the conclusion to an episode of The Walking Dead.
Muting has existed on Twitter for a while now, though thus far it has only allowed users to mute specific accounts. These two new features will instead allow users to mute entire conversation threads, allowing you to remove yourself from a discussion, along with muting various topics. This will mean that if there’s a big event coming up, such as a Game of Thrones season finale or a major football match, you can mute all tweets pertaining to these topics if you don’t want to have them spoiled for you before you watch them.
While the majority will likely use this mute feature to prevent themselves from finding out who Negan has hit over the head with his baseball bat, Twitter will see this as an opportunity to promote its new focus upon tackling abuse on the platform. With so many having complained about the rampant harassment faced by many of the site’s users, Twitter allowing these users to now effectively filter out such comments will prove to be beneficial, if not a worthy substitute for more efficient moderation.
However, Twitter is also debuting more robust tools for reporting hate speech and other such toxic behavior. A statement from the company reads: “Our hateful conduct policy prohibits specific conduct that targets people on the basis of race, ethnicity, national origin, sexual orientation, gender, gender identity, religious affiliation, age, disability, or disease. Today we’re giving you a more direct way to report this type of conduct for yourself, or for others, whenever you see it happening. This will improve our ability to process these reports, which helps reduce the burden on the person experiencing the abuse.”
With Twitter having become notorious for its inability to adequately deal with abuse, these changes are welcome new additions. It’s uncertain whether or not a focus upon greater moderation will help improve its revenue streams, but at the very least it will help provide a more hospitable environment for the social network’s current users.