Tuesday, 17 May 2016

Twitter censorship and how it works

According to the source, Twitter maintains a ‘whitelist’ of favoured Twitter accounts and a ‘blacklist’ of unfavoured accounts. Accounts on the whitelist are prioritised in search results, even if they’re not the most popular among users. Meanwhile, accounts on the blacklist have their posts hidden from both search results and other users’ timelines.

Our source was backed up by a senior editor at a major digital publisher, who told Breitbart that Twitter told him it deliberately whitelists and blacklists users. He added that he was afraid of the site’s power, noting that his tweets could disappear from users’ timelines if he got on the wrong side of the company.

The new filter is based on an optional “quality filter” previously made available to verified users. That filter also screens out tweets automatically deemed to be abusive, but is far stricter about what makes it through the net than the new one. Unlike the quality filter, however, the new feature is automatically on for all users and cannot be turned off.

“This feature takes into account a wide range of signals and context that frequently correlates with abuse including the age of the account itself, and the similarity of a Tweet to other content that our safety team has in the past independently determined to be abusive,” says Shreyas Doshi, the company’s head of product management.


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