Earlier today, Twitter introduced a new blocking policy, wherein even after blocking a person he/she will continue to be able to follow your profile and track your tweets. Twitter’s idea behind this new policy was to avoid any kind of retaliation from the blocked person. Though it seems like a noble idea, the company had to face severe backlash from Twitter users and finally it retracted the policy. Also Read - Twitter will now sell a ticket for you to join Spaces, aims to help creators earn money
According to the new policies, after blocking a person, a user would not be able to see him/her on the follower’s list or get updates about any interactions with the user’s tweets. But the blocked person could still access the user’s timeline and read and interact with the user’s tweets as if nothing had changed. To make things clearer, Twitter mentioned on its blog post, “If your account is public, blocking a user does not prevent that user from following you, interacting with your Tweets, or receiving your updates in their timeline. If your Tweets are protected, blocking the user will cause them to unfollow you.” Also Read - You can now share tweets as Instagram Stories: Here's how to do so with these simple steps
In comparison, the older policies stated that once a person was blocked, he/she wouldn’t be able to add the user to their lists, see their profile on their timeline or follow.
It is understandable why there was a backlash from the users, as in essence the new policies wanted victims of stalking or harassing to close their eyes to the danger, instead of doing anything about it.
Twitter, was quick enough to control the situation before it got out of hand. It retracted the policies and reinstated the original policies. The issued statement reads.
Earlier today, we made a change to the way the “block” function of Twitter works. We have decided to revert the change after receiving feedback from many users – we never want to introduce features at the cost of users feeling less safe. Any blocks you had previously instituted are still in effect.
In reverting this change to the block function, users will once again be able to tell that they’ve been blocked. We believe this is not ideal, largely due to the retaliation against blocking users by blocked users (and sometimes their friends) that often occurs. Some users worry just as much about post-blocking retaliation as they do about pre-blocking abuse. Moving forward, we will continue to explore features designed to protect users from abuse and prevent retaliation.
We’ve built Twitter to help you create and share ideas and information instantly, without barriers. That vision must coexist with keeping users safe on the platform. We’ve been working diligently to strike this balance since Twitter’s inception, and we thank you for all of your support and feedback to date. Thank you in advance for your patience as we continue to build the best – and safest – Twitter we possibly can.