Musk, a self-proclaimed “free-speech absolutist” set forth and announced that Twitter new policies and rules on violent content had been tightened. On Tuesday, Twitter took Twitter Safety with a thread of tweets about their “officially launched” offensive and violent speech policy. “We’ve made a few changes to our policies around violent content and similar language. Today, we’ve officially launched our Violent Speech policy, which prohibits violent threats, wishes of harm, glorification of violence, and incitement of violence.”
As per the outline of the upgraded zero-tolerance policy, Twitter wants users to rethink before they say anything on the platform and avoid any sort of threat, wish to harm, incitement or glorification of violence. Violations of the amended policies may result in the suspension of users’ Twitter handle or the mandatory requirement to delete the tweet before being allowed to tweet anymore.
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Twitter has a zero-tolerance approach towards Violent Speech, and in most cases, we will suspend any account violating this policy. For less severe violations, we may require you to delete the content before you can access your account again.
— Twitter Safety (@TwitterSafety) February 28, 2023
“Twitter is a place where people can express themselves, learn about what’s happening, and debate global issues. However, healthy conversations can’t thrive when violent speech is used to deliver a message. As a result, we have a zero tolerance policy towards violent speech in order to ensure the safety of our users and prevent the normalization of violent actions.”, reads the official Twitter help center.
While there is not much of a difference in comparison to the old policies, there are a few significant additions to the previous set. Violent threats as per Twitter revised guidelines “You may not threaten to inflict physical harm on others, which includes (but is not limited to) threatening to kill, torture, sexually assault, or otherwise hurt someone. This also includes threatening to damage civilian homes and shelters, or infrastructure that is essential to daily, civic, or business activities.” Whereas the old Twitter policy stated that “Statements that express a wish or hope that someone experiences physical harm, making vague or indirect threats, or threatening actions that are unlikely to cause serious or lasting injury are not actionable under this policy, but may be reviewed and actioned under those policies.” That means any form of threatening speech did not refrain from the company’s rules, which are modified under the new guidelines.
Explicit use of words like wish, hope, or expression of desire for harm summarizes the rules against the offense. However, it is permitted when violent expressions occur between friends or discussion of video games and sporting events. Confusing, eh? In a straight line, it focuses more on the context than on the words.
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In the case of a serious violation of the policy, the punishment may result in an immediate suspension. However, according to Twitter’s moderation and reviewer team, if the speech is less severe, it may result in a temporary locking of the account. Repeated warnings may lead to the account being suspended permanently.
Given the platform’s history, with Twitter’s policies and rules on violent content, it seems they are attempting to stabilize it and direct it toward safety. However, it will be interesting to see how fruitful it turns out in real life.
Source: Twitter Safety