Twitter Transparency Report Shows Dark Side of Social Media

Wakas Javed

The Twitter Transparency Report shows a decrease in account suspensions for many categories, but an increase related to child safety violations.

The Twitter Transparency Report shows a decrease in the number of accounts blocked or content removed for violating Twitter policies.

The report also describes the increase in requests for information from governments and how often Twitter complies with these requests. The most important thing is the proliferation of governments targeting journalists with legal provisions.

While most of the Twitter Rules violations decreased during this reporting period, some other violations, such as child exploitation, increased.

This report only shows the data from July to December 2021.

Highlights From Twitter Latest Report

Twitter claims they continue to see an alarming trend of efforts to limit press freedom around the world, with an increase in legal claims by governments against journalists and a general increase in legal claims against accounts – both record highs since reporting began.

  • Record the number of official account requests (47,572 requests for 198,931 accounts)
  • A 103 percent increase in legal requests from governments to verified journalists and news outlets since the last reporting period
  • The United States accounts for 20% of all global inquiries
  • Tweet impressions that violate Twitter account rules are less than 0.1% of the total number of impressions for all tweets
  • We rejected 29 requests by US civilians for account information aimed at disclosing the identity of the anonymous speaker

Actioned Accounts

Twitter’s Transparency Report showing a decrease in actions taken on accounts.

The word “action” refers to the suspension of an account or the removal of content in response to a violation of Twitter’s Participation Rules.

Total activated accounts down 12%

Deleted content is down 14% compared to the previous reporting period.

Total blocked accounts increased by 2%

Account Suspension Reason

The main reason for suspension of the Twitter accounts is the sexual exploitation of children, with nearly 600,000 accounts banned for this type of activity.

The second most important reason for suspensions was identity theft which only accounted for 169,396 account suspensions, followed by illegal or certain regulated goods or services and sensitive media with 119,508 and 118,356 account suspensions.

These are the final three reasons for the suspension:

Hateful Behavior – 104,565 accounts blocked

Abuse/Harassment – 82,971 accounts suspended

Violence – 41,386 accounts suspended

Statistics for suspended accounts follow a similar pattern, with child exploitation being the leading cause of suspended accounts on Twitter (599,523 accounts).

Twitter Identify Government’s Role In Transparency Reporting

According to Twitter, This update comes at a time when government requests for account information and content removal continue to set new records, including requests to reveal the identity of anonymous account holders.

“That is the reason Twitter continue to force for greater transparency from the government itself about how this power is used. Individuals who use our Services should know that we take a principled approach to how we respond to government and legal requests, and how we share information about individuals who use our Services.”

From July 1, 2021 to December 31, 2021 (the reporting period for the update we’re releasing today), we’ve seen an increase in globally accepted legal claims, a continuing upward trend for Twitter.

During this reporting period, Twitter received

47,572 lawsuits against 198,931 individual accounts, the largest number of accounts we have reported in 10 years.

This number continues to increase with each reporting period, and we continue to see a similar trend in requests for information from governments. During this reporting period, we received 11,460 such requests.

Twitter Safety

In the safety Sector, almost every category has a dip in account actions.

Only categories of child sexual exploitation, promotion of suicide or self-harm and certain categories of illegal or regulated products experienced an increase in action taken on accounts.

Safety categories with decrease in numbers of accounts which face an action from Twitter

Terrorism/Violent Extremism – 25% off

Violence – 31% decrease

Harassment/Abuse- 10% off

Hate Speech- 19% discount

Sensitive Media – 30% off

Twitter Is Proactive About Active Accounts

One important statistic is how little Twitter relies on users reporting violations of its policies.

Of the accounts registered for terrorism/violent extremism, Twitter identified 93% through the system.

Twitter’s internal tools identified child sexual exploitation policy violations in 91% of all activated accounts.

The Twitter Transparency Report found:

“Twitter terminated 596,997 exclusive accounts in this period of reporting starts from July 1, 2021 to December 31, 2021, about 32% increase from our previous report. Of these, 91% of suspended accounts were proactively identified using internal proprietary tools and industry hash sharing initiatives.

These tools and initiatives support our efforts to flag potentially infringing content for further review and removal if necessary.”

Another indicator of how quickly Twitter responds to violations of its rules is a new metric called impressions.

Impressions measure the number of times a user viewed a tweet before Twitter took action.

According to Twitter:

“Twitter force users to delete about 4 million tweets that violate twitter policies during the reporting period From July 1, 2021 to December 31, 2021.

Of the deleted tweets, 71% received fewer than 100 impressions before being deleted, and another 21% received between 100 and 1,000 impressions.

Only 8% of deleted tweets had more than 1,000 impressions. Overall, impressions from these offensive tweets accounted for less than 0.1% of total impressions for all tweets during that time period.”

These statistics are noteworthy because it shows that Twitter is very quick to respond to violations of its rules.

Twitter’s proactive response is comparable to Facebook’s moderation, as Facebook can view a perpetrator’s post more than a million times before Facebook takes action.

Source : Twitter Transparency Report

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