Twitter Reveals That It Has Deleted More Than 1.2 Million Accounts For Promoting Terrorism

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Twitter just released its biannual Transparency Report to the public, which apparently showed an interesting statistic regarding the number of accounts they had already removed from the platform. As reported by Engadget, Twitter has already deleted more than 1.2 million accounts since August of 2015. All of the accounts have apparently at one point or another promoted terrorism or attempted to spread terrorism-related content. The company revealed that it is quite active in tracking and filtering these types of content to decrease its proliferation online. The release of the report comes at an opportune time in light of the increased scrutiny of social media firms due to the spread of misinformation, hate content, and propaganda.

The company’s strategy to remove terrorism-related content from its platform has worked as evidenced by its claims that accounts created specifically to spread these types of content have rapidly declined over the past few years. As reported by CNET, the company has witnessed a steady decline over three separate reporting periods. In the second half of 2017, the company suspended a total of 274,460 accounts, which is about 8.4 percent lower than the number of accounts it had deleted during the first half of the same year. The company claimed that this was a direct result of the hard work to make the site a no-go zone for terrorist activities and those who intend to promote it through social media.

The report further revealed that 93 percent of the accounts were automatically flagged by their internal software and algorithms, while 74 percent of the terrorism-related tweets were suspended before they were even posted. The company is aiming to increase their efficiency in flagging unwanted content in the coming years. The company also outlined its intent to promote a healthy and open venue for public conversation. In pursuit of that goal, Twitter recently held a live-stream event on Periscope to get suggestions from the public on how it can improve its policies moving forward. Twitter also recently noted that it does closely consider every government’s specific regulatory legislation, but at the same time, it views these types of laws as a potential barrier to the people’s freedom of expression.