Twitter on Tuesday rolled out a new tool that makes it easier to report harassment to the cops in a move that demonstrates its ongoing intent to deal with abuse on the microblogging platform.
Now when you report a threatening tweet, you’ll see an option to send yourself a summary email with the information you’ve submitted. This lays out clearly all the details you’ve input regarding the abuse, and can be printed and handed over to law enforcement, should you wish to do so.
The emailed report (example shown right) contains the threatening tweet and URL together with the sender’s Twitter username and account URL, plus a timestamp for the tweet. Your account information and a timestamp showing when you generated the report is also included.
A blog post announcing the new tool also includes a link to a page displaying guidelines for law enforcement explaining about other potentially useful information that Twitter holds and how authorities can request it.
“While we take threats of violence seriously and will suspend responsible accounts when appropriate, we strongly recommend contacting your local law enforcement if you’re concerned about your physical safety,” Twitter’s Ethan Avey wrote in the post, adding, “We hope that providing you with a summary of your report will make that process easier for you.”
The move to bring together all the relevant information in this way is a sensible one by Twitter, and one that’s likely to be appreciated by not only the targeted user, but the investigating cops, too. The San Francisco-based company has recently increased its efforts to improve the way it handles abuse on the service.
Twitter CEO Dick Costolo recently admitted in an internal email that the company was having difficulties dealing with the issue, saying it “sucks at dealing with abuse and trolls on the platform and we’ve sucked at it for years.” He added that failing to deal with the trolls and harassment in a more determined manner meant the social media platform was losing “core user after core user.” Costolo promised more robust action to rid the service of trolls, or, at the least, to ensure that “when they issue their ridiculous attacks, nobody hears them.”