Twitter users have claimed the site is now asking users what race they are when users have made offensive statements.
Twitter appears to be rolling out a new system of double-standards based on race. It announced a new feature last May that would nag users if they were about to post a tweet including “language that could be harmful.” Since then, “Twitter has now annoyed users further by surveying them on their ethnicity when they make a statement that Twitter finds problematic,” ReclaimTheNet reported August 13.
Twitter user BadCripple came forward with the screenshots that appear to show Twitter asking several questions concerning a tweet the platform objected to.
The screenshots appeared to inquire about the statement’s context, such as asking whether a user was criticizing “hate speech” or whether a user was using “this type of language to defend myself or others.”
One screenshot, purportedly from Twitter, stated: “To keep Twitter safe and open, we’re asking people if they want to revise replies that were detected as potentially harmful or offensive.”
Other screenshots showed a list of ethnic categories, including: “Black / African / African American” and “White / European / European American.”
The screenshots also included a question seeking context for why users believe they received this warning to revise their tweets. This appeared to include selectable answers such as “I was speaking out against hate speech” and “Twitter targets people like me.”
Candace Owens, for example, was temporarily suspended by Twitter for tweeting the then-New York Times recent hire Sarah Jeong’s anti-white rant by copying Jeong’s tweets. Owens, however, swapped out the words “white” and “men” for “black,” “Jewish,” and “women,” respectively. Twitter and The Times did not take issue with the original anti-white tweets, but Owens faced consequences for rewriting them about other groups to make a point.
Twitter suspended Owens for 12 hours until public outcry erupted over double-standards. Owens’ account was then quickly reinstated. Owens posted a screenshot indicating that Twitter staff claimed that they had “made an error.”
When reached for comment, Twitter refused to answer questions directly, but instead linked to Twitter product lead Suzanne Xie’s tweet referring to an “experiment” the platform has been engaging in.
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