Twitter is giving all users access to a previously exclusive quality filter in an attempt to curb abuse on its platform. After a run of criticism for the ways that it handles harassment, threats and bots on the network, the site is opening up.
The feature had previously only been offered to people with verified accounts – those that have blue ticks next to their name. For those users – who tend to be celebrities, public figures or companies – the site had an extra option to turn a “quality filter” on and have tweets muted.
The features used a range of technologies, which looked at a range of signals including where the tweet came from and what that account has posted before. It cut out tweets that were thought to be low quality: those that appeared to be automated or intentionally offensive.
It won’t filter out content from people that a user follows, or that they’ve recently interacted with. And it can also be easily turned on and off – once it’s turned back off, the tweets will re-appear again.
As well as the quality filter, Twitter is adding new tools to let people only see notifications from those they follow. It has made those settings easier to access and turn on, too.
All of the features are thought to be a way of addressing the various complaints about Twitter’s abuse problems. The site didn’t reference those in its blog post announcing the changes – saying only that the features would give users “more control over what you see and who you interact with on Twitter” – but it has moved to help cut down that problem after numerous complaints.
The update came just an hour after Twitter also announced that it has been launching an unprecedented crackdown on extremist and terrorist tweets, and that it has blocked hundreds of thousands of users from posting on the site as part of it.