Per media reports, Twitter Inc. (TWTR - Free Report) has taken down accounts of several so called “alt-right” to curb hateful conduct on its platform.
Among those whose Twitter accounts are reportedly suspended include, National Policy Institute chief, Richard Spencer, WeSearchr founder Pax Dickinson and controversial blogger Paul Town.
Alt-right (alternative right) as described by the Oxford Dictionary refers to “an ideological grouping associated with extreme conservative or reactionary viewpoints, characterized by a rejection of mainstream politics and by the use of online media to disseminate deliberately controversial content.”
Per media reports, alt-right has been grabbing more limelight ever since President elect Donald Trump named Breitbart’s chairman, Stephen Bannon as White House’s chief strategist. Breitbart is a conservative news network that is widely reported to be an alt-right platform. Alt-right has become so popular in the lexicon that it was in the reckoning for Oxford Dictionaries’ word of the year but finished second to “Post-Truth”.
Earlier this year, Twitter banned several users for lifetime including Breitbart technology editor Milo Yiannopoulos for trolling African American actress and the star of the recent Ghostbusters remake, Leslie Jones regarding her ethnicity and appearance.
Twitter is trying all means to tackle hateful conduct on its platform. Trolling has plagued its platform for long now and has possibly kept potential users as well as buyers at bay. Women, minorities as well the LGBT community often have been the most vulnerable.
Yesterday, Twitter announced several measures to combat trolling. In a blog post, Twitter said that it has improvised the “mute” button, which will enable users to block tweets that contain objectionable words, phrases and conversations from their notification tabs.
Further, Twitter users will now have a “more direct way of reporting” hateful conduct. Any Twitter user can now report any hateful conduct that they come across on the platform. Per Twitter, this “helps reduce the burden on the person experiencing the abuse, and helps to strengthen a culture of collective support on Twitter.” Twitter is also “retraining” its staff to better tackle abusive behavior on the platform.
Twitter is going through one of the toughest phases in its corporate history. User growth is sluggish and advertising revenues face decelerating growth. Amid this entire fracas, the exodus of high profile executives continues. Shares have cratered over 26% in the last one year and have kept investors on the edge. CEO Jack Dorsey’s focus on “live” and user friendly changes hasn’t yet moved the needle for Twitter.
To top it, the widely expected takeover didn’t materialize with the interested parties ranging from Alphabet (GOOGL - Free Report) to Salesforce (CRM - Free Report) to The Walt Disney Company (DIS - Free Report) shirking away last minute given the plethora of challenges that Twitter faces including trolling. It apparently did very little justice to its estimated $16-$20 billion price tag.
At present, Twitter has a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.
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