The Slatest

Twitter CEO Admits: “We Suck at Dealing With Abuse… and We’ve Sucked at It for Years.”


Photo by LEON NEAL/AFP/Getty Images

If you’re reading this, you probably know all about the transformative power of Twitter as a tool of information sharing and all the positive knock-on effects it produces. You are probably also aware: Twitter doesn’t always appeal to our better angels, and often can serve as a conduit for unleashing words, thoughts, deeds that are mean at best, sinister and depraved at worst.

It turns out Twitter knows it too. Obviously. But after a string of half-measures that haven’t made the social media platform much kinder, or gentler, company CEO Dick Costolo acknowledged in an internal memo this week that Twitter has failed at protecting its users from abuse and bullying on the platform.

In the memo, first published by The Verge, Costolo takes personal responsibility for the lack of progress made in dealing with abuse. He also vows to do better. Here’s more from the memo:

We suck at dealing with abuse and trolls on the platform and we’ve sucked at it for years. It’s no secret and the rest of the world talks about it every day. We lose core user after core user by not addressing simple trolling issues that they face every day. I’m frankly ashamed of how poorly we’ve dealt with this issue during my tenure as CEO. It’s absurd. There’s no excuse for it. I take full responsibility for not being more aggressive on this front. It’s nobody else’s fault but mine, and it’s embarrassing. We’re going to start kicking these people off right and left and making sure that when they issue their ridiculous attacks, nobody hears them.