Twitter has been subjected to a series of embarrassing questions from the British parliament over its continuing failure to address violent abuses targeting women.
Katy Minshall, head of public policy in the social media government, has admitted he must do more to safeguard women users, but said that the company is “acutely aware” of the problems that women have on Twitter, saying that it is under review as it applies its policies to solve its long problem of misogyny.
“We are deeply aware of the unique experience women have on Twitter and the changes we may have to make in our policies to achieve this right “, he said this afternoon at the session of the Committee on Human Rights on Freedom of Speech and Democracy. “We are very aware of the real problem that women experience on our platform.”
Parliamentarians raised the question of how Twitter unfairly applies the policies of hateful conduct according to the sex targeted, with the deputy Joanna Cherry accusing the company of show a pattern of relaxed tolerance to tweets that contain violent attacks on women.
It contrasts this with examples of alacrite intolerance to tweets that raised the issue of male violence – citing examples of users who had temporarily suspended their Twitter accounts to make observations of generally masculine taste – like that, in total, men kill more than women.
Or tweets that cite English law – which states that only a man can commit rape.
“There seem to be many mistakes here. And they seem to be mistakes that fail to protect women. Do you accept it? “asked Cherry.”
There is clearly a series of steps we want to take we must take, but we are in a different place than where we were last year, “said Minshall initially, before simplifying his answer to” clearly there is a problem here to look at “later in the question and answer session. You were asked to look at some examples of violent tweets that had been addressed to women, including tweets whose recipients had reported them to Twitter – only to be told that they did not violate his odious conduct policy. later, after feminist activists, journalists and Cherry herself had tweeted on Twitter’s decision not to take down some of these misogynistic tweets, she reversed the course and removed them.
Minshall admitted that one of the abusive tweets had been removed from the last night, after Cherry had tweeted to get attention. A tweet quoted during the session depicted a cartoon figure with a picture of a real hand holding up a gun pointed at the viewer, at the top of the caption “shut the fuck up terf” – “terf” is a term of abuse that Cherry pointed to tends to be applied to women; another showed a video clip of a man who repeatedly cut a woman in the neck who had been attached to a tweet saying “what I do to the terfs”; a third was what Cherry called “a very unpleasant representation of a male skinning a living woman” – who said it was sent to one of the women after they complained on Twitter about having received one of the other violent tweets. Having said that he believed that all the tweets that Cherry had raised as examples violated Twitter policies and should have been removed if they had not already done so.
Even though he said he doesn’t work in the security team, taking his answer with: “I’m not the expert.” that none of the contrary examples raised by her were in any way offensive to transgender people.
“What I’m trying to understand is why, initially, the first tweet – the neck cut – was regulated by Twitter. And why he took the intervention of a prominent journalist, an eminent feminist commentator and a member of parliament because it did not feel good, “he continued.” We need to understand who is actually carrying out these decisions. Who is carrying out mediation on Twitter.
It is done in the UK, it is done in America, who is made by. it is some attempt at gender balance within the teams of people watching these tweets.
“Minshall said he could not answer the question on gender distribution there and then – saying he would write to the committee with an answer. Cherry also has stressed that sex is a protected feature in UK law and has pressed Minshall several times on why Twitter’s hateful policy applies only to gender. “You can tell us why Has Twitter chosen to exclude sex from their hateful conduct policy as a protected feature? “he asked.”
I wonder if that’s what could go wrong here? That the training is not covering up the fact that sexist, misogynist and humiliating behavior should be treated with the same gravity as the abuse of, for example, transsexuals.
“Minshall said Twitter’s hate policy is based on UN definitions, advocating the current policy that protects gender should also protect against misogyny – while admitting that there is still an asymmetric burden for women who use Twitter to report abuse.
He agreed to follow up on the commission to explain because Twitter policy doesn’t even include sex as a protected feature.
“There is a lot we want to do to reduce the burden on journalists,” he said.
“We have rules in place where it would be a violation to address someone based on the fact that I am a woman – where we need to do much more is to be proactive in reducing the burden on victims to report it to us “.
At another time during the session said Twitter is also reviewing its harassment policy – saying it is concerned about the risk of women being persecuted via the ex-partner platform.
“There is a specific problem for women, typically ex-partners , stalking on Twitter in ways that have traditionally been difficult to identify in our rules and we want to do better on this, “he added.