Twitter is testing out letting users block all replies

Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey.

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Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey.
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Mike Blake/Reuters
  • Twitter is testing a way to let its users block all replies to their tweets, one of four options Twitter plans to give users who want to tailor who replies to their posts.
  • The plans were laid out by Twitter at this year’s CES tech conference in Las Vegas. Twitter’s director of product, Suzanne Xie, reportedly said the company’s aim with tailored replies is to “give authors a way to control the conversation space.”
  • Twitter also touched on other areas including the planned global expansion of ‘Topics,’ a feature that lets users stay on top of the latest tweets from across the site about topics that interest them.
  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

Twitter is trying to crack down on its trolling problem.

The social media firm announced it’s testing a way to let users block all replies to their tweets – one of four planned options aimed at letting the platform’s users personalize who can reply to their tweets.

We first saw the news via TechCrunch.

The other three options are: Anyone can reply; only those who a user follows can reply; and only those tagged in the tweet can reply.

Twitter revealed the plans at the CES tech conference in Las Vegas, where the firm has been hosting a media forum led by Kayvon Beykpour, its vice president of product.

“The primary motivation is control,” Beykpour reportedly said. “We want to build on the theme of authors [Twitter users] getting more control and we’ve thought… that there are many analogs of how people have communications in life.”

Suzanne Xie, Twitter’s director of product, echoed Beykpour’s comments. She said: “We thought, well, what if we could actually put more control into the author’s hands before the fact? Give them really a way to control the conversation space, as they’re actually composing a tweet?”

The singer Lizzo announced she was quitting the platform earlier this month because it

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The singer Lizzo announced she was quitting the platform earlier this month because it “has too many trolls.”
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Apple

“The reason we’re doing this is: if we think about what conversation means on Twitter, right now, public conversation on Twitter is you tweet something everyone in the world will see and everyone can reply, or you can have a very private conversation in a DM. So there’s an entire spectrum of conversations that we don’t see on Twitter yet.”

Twitter has long been trying to boost what it calls “conversational health” on its platform or, in plain language, the amount of abuse and trolling by users.

Numerous celebrities have quit the platform over the years due to trolls, with the singer Lizzo the latest high-profile figure to bid Twitter goodbye on the grounds it “has too many trolls.” Women and high-profile people of colour have particularly complained about harassment on Twitter.

According to TechCrunch, Twitter also touched upon plans to enhance a number of the platform’s preexisting features, including the expansion of ‘Topics.’ First introduced in November, the Topics feature lets users keep abreast of latest tweets on specific themes, or topics, that interest them.