Twitter updates privacy policy for user data handling, to be effective from August 19

Twitter has shed light on its privacy policies around several of its new features and services in a new blog. The company maintains that no personal data of its users is sold to anyone.

(Image: Reuters) (Image: Reuters)
Story highlights
  • Twitter states that it creates audio transcriptions of conversations held on Spaces.
  • It also receives payment information when a transaction is done on or through Twitter.
  • Twitter explains how third-party partners might receive user activity information on videos on autoplay.

Twitter has rolled out several new features and services over the past few months. The company has now updated its Terms of Service and Privacy Policy to inform users of the policies that will govern these updates.

The microblogging platform notes the updates to its privacy policy in a new blog. The changes, as mentioned, include those around Twitter Spaces, Twitter Blue, its payments and other features. The updated Terms of Service and Privacy Policy will come into effect on August 19, 2021.

The primary piece of update in this privacy policy is around Twitter Spaces. Twitter's social audio space is meant to enable voice-based conversations among its users. The company now elaborates on how it uses this data as per its policies.

Twitter states that it produces audio transcriptions of the conversations taking place on Spaces. The text is then reviewed for potential violations of the Twitter Rules. Twitter also uses this "to make improvements to the way the feature works."

It further reminds that all conversations on Spaces are currently public, so the data is not private anyway. The audio transcriptions might have hurt user privacy otherwise.

Another update in the policy involves Twitter Blue, the company's first-ever premium subscription offering that is currently restricted to Canada and Australia. The updated terms of service shed light on additional terms applicable to the service.

As for payments made on or through Twitter, it explains that it might receive information on the transactions. This might include when the payment was made or "when it is set to expire or auto-renew."

Twitter also brings to notice its new autoplay feature for videos. While many are already well versed of the feature through other social media platforms, some underlying policies are not well known.

Twitter explains that the videos that play on their own on a user's feed are often made by its third-party partners. So when the users watch or interact with such content from these partners, "they may receive and process some data as described in their privacy policies." Users wanting to avoid this can switch off the feature from Twitter settings.

Twitter clears yet again that it does not sell the personal data of users to anyone. The new Privacy Policy also indicates how this user data is protected when it is transferred "outside the country you reside in." Users are likely to see an in-app notice about these updates soon.