Are you a creator that often finds themselves hounded by bigots mass-reporting your work? Here are some known ways that you can keep your accounts safe.
In order to combat abuse of automated moderation systems, it’s important to understand how those systems work. Automatic moderation systems work by flagging Tweets based on words or even phrases that the system deems inappropriate. According to Twitter, half of all abusive tweets are removed before another user even reports them.
Automatic moderation systems aren’t perfect. They work under the assumption that the users of the site are going to behave like normal people. With rare exceptions, it’s unlikely that a tweet will be mass-reported with certain keywords that isn’t a direct violation of the TOS, so it makes sense that every tweet isn’t moderated by hand.
Except when that system is abused.
So how do you combat dozens if not hundreds of people reporting your work? While your account may only be locked for a short period of time, every second in which your work isn’t available online costs you money in promotions. So what can an independent content creator do?
Simple enough. You learn how to use social media better than they do. Here are three quick and easy things that you can learn how to do in the course of this article to protect your account from TERFs and other bigots.
- Asterisks are your friend. The asterisk symbol (*) shows up as a “wildcard” on a search engine, rendering names (like Gl*nner) essentially unsearchable. You can use asterisks on words that are likely to be reported (like k*ll) to still communicate your message to your audience without being flagged by the system.
This also stops folks from using namesearching to add you to “report” lists.
- Nothing is stopping you from having as many accounts as you want and only the reported accounts ‘count.’ Do you have a Twitter for your product or service? Always have at least two Twitter accounts – one for your product or service, and one for your personal. If your personal is locked, you can always update your followers through your art account. Retweets are also completely unreportable, repreventing TERFs from sinking a creator’s busines account with a large follower count if they decide to retweet a political post from your personal.
You have the right to speak your mind on social media as long as you follow the Terms of Service of the site that you are using. If you follow the Terms of Service and your account is still accidentally locked or reported, it’s highly unlikely that other accounts that did not post content like this will remain untouched.
- Block and forget. Block TERFs before they have a chance to engage with you. TERFS feed off the idea that their behavior is upsetting or disruptive to your work. Because it is literally impossible for TERFs to campaign in ways that involve productive work, they believe that online harassment of trans people is their work, and consider it a success when they prevent transgender people from going about their daily life.
If you have any further suggestions or techniques that you tried that work for you, feel free to drop a comment below.