Twitter does about-face on revised blocking policy

Dec. 13, 2013 at 4:42 PM
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SAN FRANCISCO, Dec. 13 (UPI) -- Twitter has announced it's reverting to its original user-blocking policy after a change on Thursday ruffled feathers of users around the world.

Originally, users blocking someone on Twitter had meant those blocked could no longer see the user's tweets, but under the change blocked users could still see everything the person initiating the block did.

Twitter, in explaining the revised policy, said blocking another user from a public account "does not prevent that user from following you, interacting with your Tweets, or receiving your updates in their timeline."

The relaxed blocking rules were immediately slammed by a majority of Twitter users, resulting in the turnaround, CNET reported.

An online petition urging Twitter to rethink the change in policy had nearly 2,000 signatures within hours, leading Twitter to capitulate.

"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," Twitter said in a blog post. "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," the post said.

"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."

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