A refresher on the Twitter Rules: What happens when you report?

Wednesday, 13 February 2019

Twitter is where people to go to see - and talk about - what’s happening in the world. As an open platform, we’re very proud of the fact that Twitter lets people see every point of view. However, just like the real world, sometimes people have points of view which might be different, controversial or even offensive to others.

Freedom of speech and expression are part of our DNA at Twitter and we encourage people to express themselves openly. However, there are some limitations on the type of content and behavior that we allow on Twitter which are outlined in the Twitter Rules.  

What to do if you see something that violates the Twitter Rules

If you see something that violates the Twitter Rules, the most important thing you can do is report it. Reporting helps signal to us that something is going on, and it helps us keep conversations on Twitter healthier in the long term.

We can take action on individual Tweets, Direct Messages, or accounts. Some common reasons people might report include spam, abusive or harmful content, impersonation, copyright, or trademark violations.

To report a Tweet

  1. Navigate to the Tweet you’d like to report.
  2. Tap the icon located at the top right corner of the Tweet.
  3. Select Report Tweet

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A few things to keep in mind

Retweeting content which may be in violation of the Twitter Rules or sharing screenshots only serves to spread content further and gives it more visibility to more people. The best thing you can do is report it.

Tagging Twitter employees or Twitter company accounts does not escalate reports. We have dedicated processes and a specially trained international team who help enforce the Twitter Rules. If you tag employees or accounts, rather than reporting, our review team may not see it and may not be able to take timely action.

What happens when you report?

We use a combination of human review and technology to help us enforce our rules. Our team reviews and responds to reports, 24/7; and can respond to reports in multiple different languages.

The team undergoes in-depth training on our policies, ensuring we’re considering social and political nuances, and taking local context and cultures into account.

If we identify an account or Tweet that violates the Twitter Rules, there are a range of enforcement options we may pursue. These include limiting Tweet visibility, requiring a user to delete a Tweet, placing accounts in read-only mode or, for more serious or repeat offences, permanently suspending an account.

If an account is locked for breaking our rules, we share the offending Tweet with the account holder, along with an explanation of which policy it violated. We also provide the reporter with a record of the reports they’ve lodged and will let the reporter know the outcome of their report and whether or not the Tweet/s or account/s were in violation of the Twitter Rules.

What happens if your report doesn’t violate the Twitter Rules?

When it comes to reviewing Tweets or accounts for violating the Twitter Rules, context matters, and there are a range of different factors our team considers. For example: is the behavior directed at an individual, or a group of people? Has the report been filed by the target of the potential abuse or a bystander? Does the account holder have a history of violating our policies? What is the severity of the violation?

If you lodge a report and it is not found to be in violation of the Twitter Rules, there are a number of things you can do to customise your feed so you don’t see this type of content in the future.

  • Block: Restrict specific accounts from contacting you, seeing your Tweets, and following you.
  • Mute: Allows you to remove an account's Tweets from your timeline without unfollowing or blocking it. You can also mute particular words, conversations, phrases, usernames, emojis, or hashtags.
  • Filtered notifications: Get an extra level of control by filtering the notifications you receive. You can filter by using: Quality filter, mute, and advanced filters.
  • Safe Search: The Safe Search function removes potentially sensitive content by default as well as accounts people have blocked and muted from search pages.
  • Sensitive Media: Twitter’s default setting is to place potential sensitive material behind a warning. This can be adjusted in settings.
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