toIon Musk’s Twitter endorsed the Trust and Security Council, the company’s advisory group of nearly 100 independent civil, human rights, and other organizations that he formed in 2016 to address hate speech, child abuse, suicide, self-harm, and other issues on the platform. terminated. .
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The council was scheduled to meet with Twitter representatives Monday night. However, according to multiple members, Twitter informed the group via email that it was disbanding the group shortly before the meeting.
The councilors, who provided footage of the email to the Associated Press on Twitter, spoke on condition of anonymity for fear of retaliation. The email said Twitter is “re-evaluating how best to bring in external insights” and that the council “is not the best structure to do so.”
“Our work to make Twitter a safe, informative place will move faster and more aggressively than ever before, and we will continue to welcome your ideas on how to achieve this goal,” said the email, “Twitter”.
The volunteer group provided expertise and guidance on how Twitter could better combat hate, harassment and other harm, but did not have decision-making powers and did not examine specific content disputes. Shortly after buying Twitter for $44 billion in late October, Musk said he would set up a new “content control council” to help make important decisions, but later changed his mind.
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“Twitter’s Trust and Safety Council was a group of volunteers who gave their time for many years when consulted by Twitter staff to offer advice on a wide range of online harms and safety issues,” Council member Alex Holmes tweeted. “At no point was it a governing body or a decision-making body.”
Twitter, headquartered in San Francisco, confirmed the meeting with the council on Thursday in an email and promised a “open conversation and Q&A” with Twitter staff, including new trust and security chief Ella Irwin.
This came the day the three councilors announced their resignation in a press release posted on Twitter stating that “contrary to Elon Musk’s claims, the safety and well-being of Twitter users is in decline.”
These former council members soon became the target of online attacks after Musk stepped up criticism of them and Twitter’s past leadership for allegedly not doing enough to stop child sexual abuse on the platform.
“It is a crime for them to refuse to take action against child abuse for years!” Musk tweeted.
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The growing number of attacks on the council has raised concerns from some remaining members, who sent an email earlier Monday demanding that the company stop misrepresenting the council’s role.
The email said these baseless accusations by Twitter leaders “put current and former Council members in danger.”
One of the Trust and Security Council’s advisory groups was originally a group focused on child abuse. This includes the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, the Rati Foundation, and NEAR or Young Adult Survivors and Relatives in Need.
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