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Twitter Reinstates Suicide Alert Feature Following Reuters Report

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Twitter Reinstates Suicide Alert Feature Following Reuters Report

(CTN NEWS) – NEW YORK – Twitter restored a feature that promoted suicide prevention hotlines to users looking up certain content after being pressured by users and consumer safety groups.

According to two persons with knowledge of the situation, Elon Musk, the owner of the social media network, had the feature removed a few days before Reuters’ article on Friday.

Twitter’s head of trust and safety, Ella Irwin verified the removal after the published article and described it as temporary.

“Our prompts have been updated and repaired. While we do that, they were just momentarily removed,” Irwin said to Reuters in an email.

She stated, “We anticipate having them back up next week.”

Musk, who first ignored calls for comment, tweeted, “False, it is still there” about 15 hours after the initial allegation. He also posted, “Twitter doesn’t prevent suicide,” in response to users’ criticism.

The #ThereIsHelp feature displayed a banner at the top of search results for specific themes.

It included contact information for organizations that assist numerous nations with issues like mental health, HIV, vaccinations, child sexual exploitation, COVID-19, gender-based violence, natural catastrophes, and free speech.

Following its removal, various consumer advocacy organizations and users expressed worry for the safety of the platform’s most vulnerable users.

Internet services like Twitter, Alphabet’s Google (GOOGL.O), and Meta’s Facebook (META.O) have tried to point users to well-known resource providers like government hotlines for years.

When they suspect someone may be in danger of harming themselves or others.

This effort is partially due to pressure from consumer safety groups.

Twitter's edit button is not the only new thing it is working on, there's  more - BusinessToday

/ Business Today

“Google does incredibly well with these in their search results,”Irwin wrote in her email, “and (we) are mirroring some of their approach with the adjustments we are making.”

We want to ensure they are operating properly and staying current because we know these prompts are helpful in many situations.

The deletion of #ThereIsHelp, according to Eirliani Abdul Rahman, a member of a recently disbanded Twitter content advisory panel, was “very unnerving and profoundly disturbing.”

“Normally, you would be working on it in parallel, not deleting it,” she noted, even if it were temporarily removed to create room for upgrades.

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Alishba Waris is an independent journalist working for CTN News. She brings a wealth of experience and a keen eye for detail to her reporting. With a knack for uncovering the truth, Waris isn't afraid to ask tough questions and hold those in power accountable. Her writing is clear, concise, and cuts through the noise, delivering the facts readers need to stay informed. Waris's dedication to ethical journalism shines through in her hard-hitting yet fair coverage of important issues.

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