UNITED STATES: Twitter has brought back a feature that promoted suicide prevention hotlines and support groups after Elon Musk, the company’s CEO, faced criticism for removing it.
The #ThereIsHelp feature listed contacts for organizations in numerous nations that dealt with mental health, HIV, vaccines, child sexual exploitation, COVID-19, gender-based violence, natural disasters, and freedom of expression. It displayed a banner at the top of search results for specific topics.
Ella Irwin, the head of trust and safety at Twitter, had previously acknowledged the removal and described it as temporary.
Irwin said: “We have been fixing and revamping our prompts. They were just temporarily removed while we were doing that. We expect to have them back up next week.”
Musk had tweeted: “False, it is still there,” in response to inquiries regarding comments on the removal that he had initially chosen not to make. The billionaire said, “Twitter doesn’t prevent suicide,” in response to Twitter users’ criticism.
Following the initial removal, some consumer safety organizations and Twitter users expressed worry for the safety of the platform’s most vulnerable users.
The deletion of the hashtag #ThereIsHelp was “extremely disconcerting and profoundly disturbing,” according to Eirliani Abdul Rahman, a member of a recently disbanded Twitter content advisory board.
Although researchers and civil rights organizations have observed an increase in tweets containing racial slurs and other hateful content, Musk has previously claimed that impressions, or views, of harmful content, have decreased since he took over the company in October and has tweeted graphs demonstrating a downward trend.
Additionally, the businessman has stated he wants to fight child abuse pictures on Twitter and has criticized how the former owner handled the situation. But he has drastically cut back on the personnel handling potentially offensive information.
According to tweets from the firm, Twitter started rolling out some prompts around five years ago. Some of these prompts were then accessible in over 30 countries.