Twitter Restores Suicide Prevention Hotline, Other Safety Features
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Twitter Restores Suicide Prevention Hotline, Other Safety Features

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Twitter Inc has restored a characteristic that promotes suicide prevention hotlines and different security assets to customers wanting up sure content material, after coming beneath strain from some customers and client security teams over its removing.

Reuters reported on Friday that the characteristic was taken down a number of days in the past, citing two folks aware of the matter, who stated the removing was ordered by the social media platform’s new proprietor Elon Musk.

After publication of the story, Twitter head of belief and security Ella Irwin confirmed the removing and referred to as it short-term.

Twitter was “fixing relevance, optimising the dimensions of the message prompts and correcting outdated prompts,” Irwin stated in an electronic mail to Reuters. “We all know they’re helpful and our intent was to not have them down completely.”

About 15 hours after the preliminary report, Musk, who didn’t initially reply to requests for remark, tweeted “False, it’s nonetheless there.” In response to criticism by Twitter customers, he additionally tweeted “Twitter does not stop suicide.”

The characteristic, referred to as #ThereIsHelp, locations a banner on the high of search outcomes for sure subjects. It has listed contacts for help organizations in lots of international locations associated to psychological well being, HIV, vaccines, baby sexual exploitation, COVID-19, gender-based violence, pure disasters and freedom of expression.

By Saturday, the banner returned to searches about suicide and home violence in a number of international locations beneath phrases like “shtwt,” shorthand for “self-harm Twitter.”

Whether or not the characteristic had been restored for different classes was not clear. The characteristic was not showing for some search queries that Twitter has beforehand stated triggered it, comparable to “#HIV.”

Irwin didn’t instantly reply to a request for touch upon Saturday.

Twitter bans customers from encouraging self-harm, although client security teams have criticized the corporate for permitting posts that they are saying violate the coverage.

On Saturday, tweets displaying graphic imagery of individuals slicing their arms appeared beneath banners on searches for self-harm.

The disappearance of #ThereIsHelp had led some client security teams and Twitter customers to precise considerations in regards to the well-being of weak customers of the platform.

Partially as a consequence of strain from such teams, web providers together with Twitter, Alphabet’s Google and Meta’s Fb have for years tried to direct customers to well-known useful resource suppliers for issues of safety.

In her electronic mail on Friday, Twitter’s Irwin stated, “Google does rather well with these of their search outcomes and (we) are literally mirroring a few of their strategy with the adjustments we’re making.”

She added, “Google gives extremely related message prompts based mostly on search phrases, they’re at all times present and are optimized appropriately for each cell and internet.”

Eirliani Abdul Rahman, who had been on a not too long ago dissolved Twitter content material advisory group, stated the disappearance of #ThereIsHelp was “extraordinarily disconcerting” and that fully eradicating a characteristic to revamp it was uncommon.

© Thomson Reuters 2022

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