The guardian of the post truth era – Trolls

Again like the post-truth era, trolls have been quite popular terminology on social media. I am going to namesake them as ‘the guardian of the post-truth era’. With the rise of social media which keeps occupying our mind, opening up to abuse, spreading lies and sometimes keep invading to our private space.  Such users are termed as trolls.

What does troll mean?

As per Cambridge dictionary, a noun defined as someone who leaves an intentionally annoying or abusing message on the internet, in order to get attention or cause trouble.

Social media platform such as facebook, twitter enables trolls to be anonymous and abuse any individual which can be anyone, a celebrity, a politician, a sportsperson, a news anchor or a common law abiding citizen. However, Twitter has always been a little more popular with the trolls and it was less unregulated compared to other social networks, and it’s gotten a bit more toxic in the last couple of years. We all know what kind of harassment happened during presidential elections or Brexit. I refer to them as a “guardians of The post-truth era” (Do check it out my early post on what is post truth era and what is means for us?).

But the good news is the twitter has today announced some tools updates that could make it more tolerable. The company will proactively tackle abusive behavior even when it’s not reported, and the app will gain tools to make it easier to filter unpleasant tweets under the virtual rug.

twitter-notification-filterall-tools

The Twitter app will soon gain much more robust notification options. These advanced filters support ignoring pings from accounts without an avatar, phone number, or verified email. That should cut down on spam. Muting will be more powerful as well with the ability to block Tweets that include certain words or phrases for as long as you want. You can also choose to only mute those tweets from people you don’t follow.

When you report content on Twitter for harassment, the app will now be aware of those reports. The notification tab will alert you when reports have been received, as well as when (or if) action is taken based on your report. Twitter will also leverage its algorithms to proactively take action against abusive accounts in the absence of a report.

For example, an account that is tweeting aggressive things at multiple non-followers. Twitter may temporarily mute that person.

All these changes are rolling out to the Twitter app in the coming days and weeks. Feature updates like this are usually handled by a server-side change, so an app update probably isn’t necessary.

As a user, I have never faced such an extreme abused but I am aware of this issue which needs to be tackled as there are billions of people who are active on social media and can be difficult to control. This is a welcome update from Twitter.

“This person probably lives in their momma’s basement, scratching their ass and lacking vitamin D.” – #SocialMediaTrolls

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