Commend Social Media Site for Cracking Down on Hate Speech


Target: Dick Costolo, CEO of Twitter

Goal: Applaud Twitter for strengthening its policy protecting users from abusive tweets

Twitter recently announced new changes to its policies in response to complaints that the social media platform was’t doing enough to combat hate speech, particularly abusive language toward women.

To start, Twitter is adding additional staff to handle abuse reports, making efforts to simplify the reporting process, and updating its official rules to clarify that abusive behavior is not tolerated on the site. Simplifying the reporting process includes the addition of a “report abuse” button on individual tweets on some mobile versions of Twitter.

These changes come shortly after activist Caroline Criado-Perez led a campaign in the UK to get Jane Austen to be featured on 10-pound notes, making it the first time in history that a woman will be featured on UK banknotes. After the news about Criado-Perez’s successful campaign broke, she received so many rape threats and other violent reactions on Twitter that she remarked she couldn’t keep up with reporting them. Many activists accused Twitter of not acting quickly enough.

“We are committed to making Twitter a safe place for our users,” the official post from Twitter announcing the policy changes reads. “We are adding additional staff to the teams that handle abuse reports and are exploring new ways of using technology to improve everyone’s experience on Twitter. We’re here, and we’re listening to you.”

Twitter is finally reacting to calls for the site to work against rape and murder threats thrown around by abusive users. The company pledges to continue to work toward more effective ways of reporting abusive tweets. Sign the petition below to show your support for these positive changes to the site’s policies and to encourage more progress to be made to put an end to harmful hate speech.


Dear Dick Costolo,

Recent changes to Twitter’s policies show that the company is finally taking serious measures to crack down on abusive tweets, especially the frequent rape and murder threats that are waged against women on the social media platform.

The addition of a prominent abuse button to certain mobile versions of Twitter — along with the promise to work to add the button to more versions over time — will significantly simplify the process for reporting hate speech on the website. This will make it easier to put an end to threats and hold abusive users accountable. I urge you to continue taking steps toward making Twitter a safe place for its users.


[Your Name Here]

Photo Credit: Raver13371 via DeviantArt

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52 Signatures

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