Twitter responds to outrage over abuse

Dick Costolo, CEO of Twitter. Photo / AFP
Dick Costolo, CEO of Twitter. Photo / AFP

Twitter will add a button to all major versions of its software to make it easier to report offensive or abusive posts.

Del Harvey, the company's head of trust and safety, made the announcement in a blog post titled "We hear you", on Monday in the UK.

It follows an online petition for a crackdown on abusive tweets after hundreds of rape threats were directed at Caroline Criado-Perez, an activist who campaigned to keep women on UK banknotes.

The petition on the website change.org has attracted nearly 70,000 signatures, and says abuse on Twitter "frequently goes ignored".

"It's (sic) current reporting system is below required standards", requiring users to "search for details on how to report someone for abuse".

Twitter introduced an abuse-reporting button to its iPhone and mobile versions three weeks ago. Harvey said the company plans to "bring this functionality to Android and desktop web users". "We are not blind to the reality that there will always be people using Twitter in ways that are abusive and may harm others," she said.

The vast majority of the 400 million daily posts are positive and she said Twitter already had a system for reporting complaints. But that requires filling out an onerous form.

- AAP

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