Back in May, the company first introduced the ‘conversation setting’ feature as an experimental way to stop harassment over the platform.
Any Twitter user can now block random people from replying to their tweets.
On Tuesday, Twitter made the once experimental “conversation setting” feature available to all users for both mobile and desktop. The company first introduced the function back in May to help stop harassment over the platform. And apparently, Twitter liked the results.
“Sometimes people are more comfortable talking about what’s happening when they can choose who can reply,” wrote Twitter’s director of product management Suzanne Xie in a blog post. “We’ve seen people use these settings to have conversations that weren’t really possible before.”
By keeping out unwanted replies, users should have an easier time continuing meaningful conversations on the platform, Xie added. You’ll notice the option when you begin penning a tweet. An icon below will let you control the replies to your tweet with three options: everyone can reply, only people you follow, or only people mentioned in the tweet.
Retweet with Comment, share, and like these Tweets.”
According to Xie, the new conversation setting has been helping users to host interviews and panels on Twitter without interruption. There also hasn’t been a major backlash to get around the restriction either.
“These settings prevented an average of three potentially abusive replies while only adding one potentially abusive Retweet with Comment. And, we didn’t see any uptick in unwanted Direct Messages,” she added.
One concern has been whether the feature might create echo chambers on Twitter, or pave the way for censorship. But the company says the Retweet with Comment function ensures people can still weigh in on a controversial tweet even when the replies have been restricted.
“Differing views can still be shared with Retweets with Comments, which sometimes reach a larger audience than the original Tweet,” Xie said. “Several times, we saw more Likes and views on a Retweet with Comment than on the original Tweet, even though the original Tweet author had more followers.”
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