Although for many users, mentions on Twitter are usually cause for joy, since they usually originate from people with whom we have interacted and with whom we like to have contact, there are many other cases in which it is not so. I can say that I am lucky because, despite the fact that I have had a Twitter account for many years (since 2008) I have never been especially active and, therefore, when I receive a mention notification it is usually from someone I know and with whom I feel like having such interaction.
It also happens, and this I have been observing for a long time, that Twitter has become the epicenter of the discussion (in the worst sense) about politics. Gone are the times when we complained that Justin Bieber was a trending topic all the time, I promise that I miss those times very much. Now it is impossible to review the list of current affairs and not find a minimum of two or three (of the five highlighted by Twitter on the side) focused on politicians.
The level of poisoning and toxicity that is breathed today on Twitter is unbearable, and you have to work hard to stay out of all that mud and find interesting accounts, which talk about one and a thousand topics (among which you can include politics, of course, but with arguments, not with barks and slogans). A toxicity that has now, for many, notification of a mention is, in most cases, the prelude to an insult.
If it were my case, I am clear that I would be tired, very tired, and although I attribute part of the blame for the intoxicated environment of Twitter to the disembarkation of politicians in this social network, I can get to empathize with those who manage their accounts themselves, just to discover that a gang of anonymous madmen grow strong precisely in that anonymity, and turn a medium created to converse into a tool used to insult. And here I do not distinguish between colors or flavors. And beware, I’m talking about insulting, not legitimate criticism, they are not the same thing.
And the same thing that happens with politicians, it happens with many other types of public personalities: from athletes to comedians, from journalists to youtubers. I haven’t personally experienced it, but I bet It must not be pleasant to meet an enraged mob every day whose only purpose in life seems to be to insult and threaten others. And that is why it seems good to me that systems are established to avoid it, whether on Twitter, in any other social network, and so on.
And it seems that Twitter has finally taken it seriously, as we can see. in the thread posted by Dominic Camozzi, Twitter employee specialized in privacy, and who shows us the new functions in which the company is working, aimed at avoiding mentions that we do not want to star in. Although at the moment these are initial concepts, the proposal looks very good. These are the points detailed in it:
If at any time we access Twitter and see that a user has mentioned us in a tweet or conversation, we will have the possibility to remove said mention. In this way, our username will be displayed in plain text, it will no longer be a link to access our profile and, obviously, we will no longer receive notifications related to that message.
Further, If the person who has tagged us is not someone we follow, from that moment that person will not be able to tag us again in your messages, unless we decide to reverse that block. Perhaps this is the point that generates the most doubts, since I understand that we may want to eliminate a specific mention, without preventing that person from being able to mention us again in other messages. The possibility of permanent blocking seems more than correct to me, but I think that maybe it should be optional.
Also, according to these Twitter concepts, it will be possible both to limit which people can mention you (for example, that only people you follow can do it) and set temporary locks to specific accounts. The duration of the same may be 1, 3 or 7 days. There is still no scheduled date for the arrival of these functions, but hopefully it will be soon, and that it will serve to reduce even a little, the toxicity.