‘Shadowbanned’ tweets are now officially labeled on TwitterReading Time: 2 minutes
Certain ‘hateful’ tweets can remain on Twitter but the algorithm will not promote them.
Are some of your tweets not quite getting the engagement you thought they would? Feel like you’re being shadowbanned on Twitter?
Well, wonder no more. Twitter has officially rolled out its new label system which notifies users when a specific tweet’s reach is being limited. The company announced that tweets have begun being labeled on Monday evening.
How do you know what posts are being ‘shadowbanned?’ Users will see a label affixed directly to the specific tweet that says ‘Visibility limited: this Tweet may violate Twitter’s rules against ‘Hateful Conduct.’
Twitter defines ‘Hateful Conduct‘ as racist or sexist slurs, tropes, and intimidation. This also includes hateful references, imagery, and incitement. However, the company’s policies about what ‘hateful conduct’ is have become looser since Musk took over. Just last week, Twitter removed policies meant to protect trans users from harassment like misgendering and deadnaming.
While tweets that are labeled may see diminished engagement, Twitter says it will not shadowban the author of the tweet at the account level.
Since acquiring Twitter last year, Elon Musk has claimed that the platform will run under the mantra of ‘freedom of speech, not freedom of reach.’ According to Musk, this means that his Twitter will allow users to tweet ‘hateful’ content that doesn’t break the law. But, Twitter’s will make it harder to find in users’ feeds. For example, tweets with this label won’t be recommended to other users via Twitter’s recommendation algorithm.
Transparency is certainly a good thing. And, according to Twitter, being that users will now be aware when a certain tweet is being limited, they will be able to ‘submit feedback’ and appeal the label. The real question though is will this actually be enforced, evenhandedly, and in a truly transparent way. That’s something that Elon Musk’s Twitter isn’t known for quite yet.
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