A week after a storm erupted for Twitter over its perceived lack of action over abusive troll behavior by some users in the UK, the company has today gone on a PR drive to tackle the issue ahead of a proposed boycott by some users.
A post on the Twitter UK blog today notes that “We have updated the Twitter Rules to clarify that we do not tolerate abusive behaviour.” The post also reiterates previously-announced plans to add a ‘report abuse’ button to the Web and Android versions of Twitter in addition to its existing presence in the iOS app. The posts adds “We will work with the UK Safer Internet Centre to expand our user resources on digital citizenship and staying safe online,” with the company adding that its Promoted Tweets and a Promoted Trends products will be used to draw attention to the Centre’s advice and resources.
Meanwhile, Twitter’s UK General Manager, Tony Wang has published a personal apology to women affected by abusive trolls who have gone so far as to issue rape and bomb threats to high-profile female Twitter users.
I personally apologize to the women who have experienced abuse on Twitter and for what they have gone through.
— Tony Wang (@TonyW) August 3, 2013
The abuse they’ve received is simply not acceptable. It’s not acceptable in the real world, and it’s not acceptable on Twitter. — Tony Wang (@TonyW) August 3, 2013
There is more we can and will be doing to protect our users against abuse. That is our commitment. — Tony Wang (@TonyW) August 3, 2013
The move comes ahead of a proposed a boycott of Twitter over the issue, led by writer Caitlin Moran and mooted to take place tomorrow. Moran initially suggested the action a week ago but reiterated it yesterday.
So: website back up. Why I still believe we should all quit Twitter on 4th August over the rape abuse & bomb threats: http://t.co/TE8jVEcvW6
— Caitlin Moran (@caitlinmoran) August 2, 2013
Image credit: YASUYOSHI CHIBA/AFP/Getty Images