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Twitter bans sharing private photos, videos of people without their permission

Twitter bans sharing private photos, videos of people without their permission

In a blog post, the company stated that users will have to file a first-person report or one from an "authorized representative" to ensure that the photo or video has been shared without permission. 

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In a major policy update, micro-blogging site Twitter announced Tuesday that it will be prohibiting users from posting private photos, videos, other information of users without their permission. This includes threatening to expose private information or incentivizing others to do so, the company stated.

In a blog post, the company stated that users will have to file a first-person report or one from an "authorized representative" to ensure that the photo or video has been shared without permission. If the person in the tweet reports it, citing their lack of consent, Twitter will remove the media.

If the subject reports the media posted without their permission, Twitter says it will remove it.

However, there are certain exceptions. Twitter said that it may take into consideration whether the image is publicly available and/or is being covered by mainstream/traditional media (newspapers, TV channels, online news sites), or if a particular image and the accompanying tweet text adds value to the public discourse, is being shared in public interest, or is relevant to the community.

"While our existing policies and Twitter Rules cover explicit instances of abusive behaviour, this update will allow us to take action on media that is shared without any explicit abusive content, provided it’s posted without the consent of the person depicted. This is a part of our ongoing work to align our safety policies with human rights standards, and it will be enforced globally starting today," Twitter further stated.

The policy update comes at a time when "doxxing" is a prevalent threat on social media. Doxxing is the act of publicly revealing previously private personal information about an individual or organization, usually through the Internet.

Separately, on Monday, in a surprise and move, Jack Dorsey, the co-founder and chief executive officer of Twitter announced that he is stepping down, ceding the position to the company’s Chief Technology Officer Parag Agrawal, an Indian Institute of Technology Bombay alumnus.