Twitter’s ongoing effort to shake it’s reputation as a haven for trolls and abusers has taken the next step. First, they put bad behaviour accounts on time out, and now they’re refining the blocking system.
As pointed out earlier in the week, Twitter has started putting accounts that breach abuse rules into the cyber-equivalent of the naughty corner. Those in breach get an email that tells them that they’ve ‘temporarily limited some of your account features’, and their penetration into the public domain is restricted, typically for a twelve-hour stint.
Now, Twitter has changed its blocking rules too. When last we posted about blocking on Twitter, it was noted that there were weaknesses in how the system works. To plug one such gap, Twitter has extended the effects of blocking.
Blocking an account has always stopped notifications about new posts from the blockee, even if they mention you directly. Until now, however, notifications were still sent if any unblocked accounts replied to a blockee and mentioned you in their reply.
As of February 2017—in response to user feedback—Twitter will no longer notify about replies in conversations started by blocked and/or muted accounts.
Notably, notifications are still sent if the reply to the questionable thread is by a followed account. Of course, users can take the plunge and view all mentions of their account by searching their own username.
As Twitter continues to act against abuse, certain portions of the Twittersphere may thin out. Any departures could be offset by an influx of new users who are attracted by the idea of a safer, less abusive space. If the strategy works, Twitter could go even more mainstream in the near future.