Twitter has a new plan to help discourage abuse on its platform. The company has made a commitment to curb trolling and fake news, and now it wants to stop users from getting into trouble in the first place. How will Twitter do this? The company will show the rules before users do something wrong.
The social media giant is launching a study that will try publicizing its rules to see if it “improves civility.” Twitter argues that based on research, people are more likely to honor rules if they can clearly see them, so the same can be said for social networks.
The company didn’t provide a clarification on how the test will work, but this seems intentional when publishing details could theoretically skew the results. For its part, Twitter is holding itself accountable by seeking approval from university ethics committees and submitting its strategy to the Open Science Framework. All fo the results will be anonymized, and will publish an academic journal.
While this is a good plan, there’s no guarantee that it will work. If an abuser is determined, they can simply just ignore the rules and Twitter will just have to work hard to catch them. This route, however, might dissuade ‘casual’ abuse by people who may not be aware of it in the first place.