Twitter amps up censorship: Hides bad tweets

Twitter to start hiding comments from suspected 'trolls' in conversations

Twitter to start hiding comments from suspected 'trolls' in conversations

Twitter claims that early testing of this new approach has led to a "4% drop in abuse reports from search and 8% fewer abuse reports from conversations".

What we're talking about today are troll-like behaviors that distort and detract from the public conversation on Twitter, particularly in communal areas like conversations and search.

Buried at the bottom of the announcement post is another admission: Twitter has given itself the authority to restrict content that doesn't even violate its policies.

Tweets that are determined to most likely be bad aren't just automatically deleted, but they'll get cast down into the "Show more replies" section where less eyes will encounter them.

They said that while some Twitter accounts belonging to trolls have violated policy and the platform has taken action, other trolls don't necessarily violate Twitter's policies but have managed to distort or ruin erstwhile healthy conversations.

The new system will use behavioral signals to assess whether a Twitter account is adding to - or detracting from - the tenor of conversations. But complaints have continued under Dorsey's leadership, and in March, the company chose to seek outside help, issuing a request for proposals for academics and NGOs to help it come up with ways to measure and promote healthy conversations.

For Twitter, this means utilizing an amalgamation of code-based rules, human reviews, and machine learning-which will all help organize and present content to the user in a purportedly healthier way, in areas such as search and conversation.

Twitter said it has tested the new approach and saw reductions in abuse complaints in conversations and in search.

Most abuse comes from a small number of accounts that have an outsized impact, said Del Harvey, Twitter's vice president for trust and safety.

Twitter acknowledges there's a long way to go, but says its tech will learn more (and make mistakes) over time.

A Twitter spokesperson told CNN these types of tweets will not be hidden, muted or removed from Twitter because they don't violate its policies. For example, a user who signs up for multiple accounts at once, or users who repeatedly tag those who don't follow them in tweets. Our goal is to learn fast and make our processes and tools smarter.

This latest improvement is part of a new initiative, announced by Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey in March, that aims to measure and improve the "collective health, openness, and civility of public conversation" on the platform. We'll continue to be open and honest about the mistakes we make and the progress we are making.