The bullying problem on Twitter has gotten out of hand and now it could affect the company’s bottom line. Twitter thugs are known to insult users, make fun of people, and even go as far as make threats to users’ lives. The site has not done much to combat the issue. Now, the company is paying a hefty price tag for allowing the abuse and harassment to continue. Several successful companies expressed interest in buying the social media company, but have abandoned the idea due its reputation. Disney was one of the companies considering to buy Twitter, but backed out of the deal to protect its “wholesome” image. Bloomberg reports indicate the company feared the bullying and disrespectful comments would tarnish its brand. Salesforce also decided not to proceed with a deal; citing the companies values do not match its core values.
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The bullying and harassment issue has plagued the social media company for years. High-Profile users such as Normani Hamilton, 1/5th of girl group Fifth Harmony, deactivated her page for a while because the comments trolls were uploading became unbearable for the singer. She stated she could no longer subject herself to the racist bullying and hate.
Normani has teamed up with non-profit Cybersmile Foundation to combat online abuse and support others who have suffered from it. She has accepted the role as the organization’s diversity ambassador. In a press release she stated, “Unfortunately, there is a lot of abuse and negativity online. By working with Cybersmile, I want to raise awareness of the support that is available to people affected while playing my part in contributing to a kinder and more positive internet for everybody.” She is asking victims to share their stories with her by using the hashtag #CyberSmileStandsByMe.
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This summer, Ghostbusters star leslie jones also endured racist online attacks and deactivated Twitter briefly as well Leah Dunham. Dunham took a hiatus last year after constant body-shaming and abuse. The company announced last year it would work to create a solution for vicious trolls. It wasn’t until this year that the company rolled out a course of action. Recently, Twitter launched a “Safety Center” which provides options for reporting abuse and a faster response to reports of abuse and harassment. Now that Twitter realizes its financial future is on the line, and major companies do not want to partner with the social media site due to its reputation; the company will likely work harder to alleviate the opportunity for users to harass or bully other users.
Written By: Chalise Macklin