Last December, Twitter conducted limited testing in the US for a new Report Tweets flow — designed to improve the process of flagging offensive or dangerous content on the site, adding more options to explain whatever the issue might be. The test worked: the number of actionable reports increased by 50%, prompting Twitter to remove more bad stuff. Now Twitter is using this learning to update the feature globally: the new Report Tweet update is rolling out worldwide.
From our testing, it appears that it is still English only and has not activated any localized versions of the report that might answer more common issues in one region than another. (We reached out to Twitter to ask if any of these will be addressed in the future.)
The change is coming at a key time for the company. Content moderation has been a major headache for social media companies, and they have faced federal investigations in several countries examining their efforts.
Many contract moderators are not working under safe conditions and have to go through multiple positions in an hour. And the format of the report sent to a post may not help them provide the full context of the situation, forcing them to ignore the report or take the wrong action.
On top of all that, Twitter in particular has faced a lot of headaches with this issue. Not only is it a platform for many when it comes to hot reviews – a honey pot when it comes to trolls and offensive comments in general – but the company is regularly criticized for being slow to respond to people’s complaints, both those related to reports. tweets or make any kind of update on the Twitter product itself.
But Twitter — now in the midst of a potential takeover process that has partly highlighted suspicious content and accounts hosted on the platform, and which could spur a significant change to its moderation policies — wants us to know it’s On It.
The new Report Tweet process allows you to provide more context when reporting a tweet. In the previous reporting flow, you had limited choices in terms of categories that describe why a post should be removed and who it affects. And it focused more on you figuring out which rule a tweet might be breaking.
Twitter’s new reporting process guides you better, allowing you to provide more information about how a tweet can affect someone. Additionally, you can select various options to frame the context of the allegedly abusive tweet. Each screen has a detailed description of the step and the options available on that page.
At the end of the process, Twitter summarizes your complaint to indicate which rule the reported tweet may be violating. If you think it’s not the right rule, you can select another rule. In addition, Twitter also allows you to provide additional context via a text box.
The update should make it considerably easier to report to more people. On the one hand, the previous incarnation of the experience proved to be irritating for people to figure out what policy a tweet might be violating when they might have seen something upsetting or want to report harassment.
“What can be frustrating and complex about reporting is that we enforce it based on violations of the terms of service as defined by Twitter’s rules. The vast majority of what people are reporting falls on a much wider gray spectrum that doesn’t meet Twitter’s specific criteria for breaches, but they’re still reporting what they’re experiencing as deeply problematic and highly disruptive,” said Renna, Senior Manager. of UX. Al-Yassini said in december.
The company said it worked with different designers, researchers and writers to carefully craft this new stream. With this change, Twitter plans to use this new reporting data to identify more trends and categories of harassment and spam.
The effectiveness of the new process will be tested when people in different geographies and cultural contexts use it when trying to justify whether a tweet is abusive.
Twitter’s new reporting process is available on iOS, Android and the web.