Twitter Banning Porn?! – How that’s Working & the Problems for You

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Talks of Twitter banning porn goes around all the time. But to explain that simply – It’s Complicated.

It is a true social media giant and one of the most popular platforms today.

How easy the app is to use and the rapid-fire element it holds has made it a handy communication tool worldwide. 

But while Twitter can be a great platform for hanging out online and getting your daily dose of news and memes, it also comes with its set of cons. 

The platform has an anything-goes approach, which can be harmful.

Especially, for teens and younger children. 

Today, when children’s safety on the internet is a major concern, social media platforms like this need to be a part of this conversation. 

The lack of regulations on who can post on Twitter and what can be posted has become a huge point of debate lately. 

With the CEO of Twitter, Jack Dorsey, recently under fire for the problematic Twitter policies, it’s about time we have a deeper look into what exactly is the deal with the Twitter porn ban system. 

Twitter Banning Porn – The Policies they’re Following

Over the years Twitter has come up with a wide variety of policies to regulate its users and also the content posted. Among these policies, some important ones are:

Sensitive Media Policy

In November of 2019, Twitter introduced it’s new and remodeled “Sensitive Media Policy”.

The policy states,  “You may not post media that is excessively gory or share violent or adult content within the live video or in profile or header images. Media depicting sexual violence and/or assault is also not permitted.”

Initially, the new policy did seem promising, until it also stated: “You can share graphic violence and consensually produced adult content within your Tweets, provided that you mark this media as sensitive… If you don’t mark your media as sensitive, we will do so manually if your content is reported for review.”

Non-consensual Nudity Policy

Introduced in 2019, according to this policy, you may not post or share intimate photos or videos of someone that were produced or distributed without their consent.

Sharing explicit sexual images or videos of someone online without their consent is a severe violation of their privacy and the Twitter Rules.

Under this policy, you can’t post or share explicit images or videos that were taken, appear to have been taken, or that were shared without the consent of the people involved.

Child Sexual Exploitation Policy

In October 2020 Twitter introduced a zero-tolerance child sexual exploitation policy. The social media platform claims to have zero tolerance towards any content that promotes the exploitation of children. 

This also applies to content that may further contribute to the victimisation of minors through the promotion or glorification of child sexual exploitation.  

Despite Twitter banning porn relating to minors and such sensitive groups, the problem is still there. 

This is not surprising, as these Twitter policies are quite vague and loopholes can be found around them easily. For example:

  1. Twitter has no solid means of figuring out whether pornography on the platform was consensually or non-consensually produced. 
  1. Only marking pornography as “sensitive media” is not enough. It further enables the anything-goes attitude and facilitates rape culture.
  1. There are no clear policies on sex trafficking and prostitution. The vague policies mentioned by Twitter, pay no heed to these issues. 

Importance of Twitter in Today’s World

Since its birth in 2006, Twitter has been on quite a journey.

Along with the change in name from Twttr to Twitter, the platform serves a much different purpose today than it did a couple of years ago.

When it was first founded, the platform was a medium to share daily updates with family, friends, and acquaintances. It was established as a microblogging platform for users to send out short text messages to friends and acquaintances, with a max character limit of 140 characters. 

In its most raw form, Twitter was a general communication platform. One that allowed users to share their statuses with their peers. However, it did not gain much popularity in its initial days. 

Twitter Today..

Twitter has become more of a media outlet. When you log on to Twitter today, news headlines and stories will be front and center on your feed. 

It is one of the most influential platforms today with regards to news and current affairs. 

It is beloved by journalism professionals and newsreaders alike.

Statistics show that 71% of Americans get their daily dose of news from Twitter.

This is not only true for the US but also holds true especially for millennials across the globe in developed and developing countries.

An article by Forbes recently shined a light on how Twitter is the holy grail platform for journalists in today’s world. They use the platform not only to break news but also to promote their articles, opinions, blogs, upcoming projects, and more.

In many ways, it has become a PR and publicity tool. 

Anyone who knows how to use the platform optimally can definitely take their career to new heights. 

Also, anyone who’d like to know the A-Z of world affairs can get it all on Twitter with just the click of a button. 

Currently, Twitter is the best indicator of the wider pulse of the world and what’s happening within it.

 No other social media platform has been able to achieve this so far. 

This is why Twitter plays such an important role in our lives today. With our busy schedules and dynamic lifestyles, it is a one-stop platform that can keep us updated on anything and everything. 

This is why more people around the world would benefit from Twitter banning porn than you would imagine.

Porn on Twitter is here to Stay

Sadly, this is the reality.

In the current scenario, Twitter has become a Wild Wild West compared to other major social media platforms.

Instagram and Facebook for example have gone in the exact opposite direction. These platforms have not only banned sexual content but also any form of content that could in any way be constructed as sexual. 

YouTube has also followed a similar path as Facebook and Instagram. Calling for a ban on all forms of sexual content. 

The thing Twitter banning porn isn’t working in the same way. 

In early 2020, the company signalled a possible ban on explicit content of all nature on it’s platform with it’s upcoming policy.

However, such a policy has not yet been put into force. 

In July 2020, a spokesperson for Twitter said, “Accounts that simply post adult content either to express their sexuality or their interests will not be suspended.” 

There has been no change in the policy since then. The same spokeperson also said that, users can expect porn to be treated the same in 2020 and 2021 as it had been in 2019.

In many ways, the Porn Industry is to be blamed for this. With how widely and rapidly this industry has grown over the last two decades, it is no surprise that it holds power over a large chunk of digital media. Social media also falls under this category. 

A ban on pornographic content would seriously damage many business in the industry.

Plus, it’s not just that. The ban would also negatively impact Twitter’s engagement, growth and revenu rates. 

These two points combines, it seems highly unlikely that porn is leaving Twitter anytime soon. 

3 Tips to Cut Out as much Porn on Twitter as Possible

There is no denying that Twitter is an important platform. 

If you’re someone who uses Twitter to stay informed and on top of the news, but are getting frustrated with the increasing porn on the platform.

We have good news for you!

You don’t need to quit Twitter and look for an alternative. Because honestly, there is none! 

Instead, you can implement these 3 tips / suggestions for enjoy a porn-free version of twitter.

This is also extremely useful for parents who want to ensure their children are safe on the platform.

Update Twitter Settings

Twitter allows you to hide “sensitive media” if you wish.

Log into your twitter account from your desktop and click on Settings. Further click on Privacy and Safety. Scroll down and you will find “hide sensitive content”. Check the box next to it.

This way Twitter will prevent Tweets with potentially senstive content from appearing on your feed and explore page. 

This not only hides pornography but also any form of media that might be considered gory or NSFW. 

Install a Porn Blocker

A porn blocker is the easiest way to block adult content on any platform. 

You can install a porn blocker like BlockerX on your phone and laptop to ensure that you don’t come across any pornographic content anytime your browsing through the internet. Be it social media or any other platform.

Open the App Store/ Play Store or Chrome Web Store and search for “porn blocker”. Once you come across the app, install it on your choice of device and set it up. You can check out this article on how to install a porn blocker on your phone for further details.

Once you have the app set up and the porn filter turned on, it will automatically block all adult content when you’re browsing through Twitter. 

Mute Particular Words and Accounts 

This is another way of ensuring that any form of pornographic content does not show up on your feed.

Once you’ve logged into your twitter account, head over to Settings and click on Privacy and Safety. 

Then, scroll down to safety and click on Muted. Here, you will find the Muted Words Section. 

You can use this feature to mute particular words like “Porn”, “Sex”, “Sextape”, etc. 

Once you mute these words, any form of content containing these words will no longer appear on your feed and explore page. 

Similarly, you can also block particular twitter accounts following the same steps. If you come across any account posting porn, you can easily block them.

Conclusion

At least for the near future, irrespective of Twitter banning porn or not, porn is definitely going to be around.  

We can only hope that in the future, major corporations around the world take stricter steps to ban porn and all the other attrocities like sex trafficking and child exploitation that come along with it. 

Till then it is up to us to use social media platforms like Twitter in a healthy and regulated way. While also spreading a word about the atrocities of porn industry. 

The more educated we are, the better the future will be both online and offline. 

We hope this article helped you understand Twitter’s porn ban arrangement. It’s only when we’re well informed can we push for better reforms on the Internet. 

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