Wed. Feb 28th, 2024

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Customers of X, previously often known as Twitter, will not have the ability to block feedback from undesirable followers, in accordance with a put up by X proprietor Elon Musk on Friday, eliminating what’s lengthy been considered as a key security characteristic. Blocking will solely be accessible for direct messages, he stated.

“Block goes to be deleted as a ‘characteristic’, apart from DMs,” Musk wrote Friday. He was responding to a put up from the account of Tesla House owners Silicon Valley, asking, “Is there ever a cause to dam vs mute somebody?” The group behind that account promotes the electrical automotive firm, the place Musk is CEO.

Since buying Twitter final yr for $44 billion, Musk has overhauled the corporate, shedding many staff, reinstating beforehand banned accounts and lately rebranding the corporate and platform as X. He did not present a cause or a timeframe for eliminating the block perform, solely saying in a follow-up response that “it is mindless” and that the mute perform will nonetheless be accessible.

Customers have been ready to make use of the block perform to ensure that hateful content material and harassment would not present up of their feed in response to their posts. The mute characteristic simply retains the person consumer from seeing the undesired responses, however would not get rid of them from others’ feeds.

Twitter customers have additionally lengthy employed the block characteristic in boycotts and to keep away from seeing adverts from particular manufacturers or promoters on the platform.

Binance CEO Changpeng Zhao, an investor within the new Twitter alongside Musk, stated in a put up that the corporate ought to focus its consideration elsewhere.

“X ought to actually resolve the bots & spam issues earlier than eradicating blocks,” wrote Zhao, whose firm owns one of many world’s largest crypto exchanges. “Simply my 0.02.”

Louis Jones, a longtime media and promoting government who now works on the Model Security Institute, stated Musk’s newest plan may be very regarding as customers could possibly be inundated with spam, threats and different dangerous content material.

Musk’s “lax strategy to free speech,” is more likely to have a “double impact,” making bullying extra frequent on the platform and inhibiting free speech by these customers who’re targets of bullies and predators, Jones wrote in an electronic mail to CNBC. “It is a downward spiral that can’t be good for the long run success of X.”

— CNBC’s Lora Kolodny contributed to this report.

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