Twitter Explains Why It Suspended Rose McGowan’s Account
Late Wednesday, Rose McGowan received a message that her Twitter account had been temporarily suspended for violating the platform’s rules. The actor, who was named in the New York Times‘ original story about sexual harassment allegations against Harvey Weinstein, has emerged as a leading voice against the producer and the culture around him, and her suspension triggered confusion and anger among her supporters.
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Many celebrities were quick to jump to McGowan’s call for backup. Jessica Chastain asked the platform to clarify exactly which of its rules McGowan was breaking, while Paul Feig, Jamie Lee Curtis, Emma Kennedy, and more pointed out the seeming disparity in suspending an account working in support of sexual assault victims while incendiary remarks from other well-known figures remain unchallenged.
— Jessica Chastain (@jes_chastain) October 12, 2017
— Paul Feig (@paulfeig) October 12, 2017
And now THIS? You allow Twitter freedom to our president but you silence a woman speaking out about sexual harassment? @rosemcgowan
— Jamie Lee Curtis (@jamieleecurtis) October 12, 2017
— Emma Kennedy (@EmmaKennedy) October 12, 2017
Late Thursday morning, the official Twitter Safety account clarified what led to the suspension: They said one of McGowan’s tweets included a private phone number, which is prohibited in the site’s terms of service. “The Tweet was removed and her account has been unlocked,” the Twitter Safety account stated. “We will be clearer about these policies and decisions in the future.”
Twitter frequently faces criticism for overlooking issues of abuse, racism, bots, and trolls while implementing less-urgent features such as in-line GIFs, or doubling the character limit (which people CERTAINLY had feelings about).
Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey chimed in regarding McGowan’s suspension, saying that the platform needed to be “a lot more transparent in our actions in order to build trust.”
“Twitter is proud to empower and support the voices on our platform, especially those that speak truth to power,” the Twitter Safety account added in a follow-up tweet. “We stand with the brave women and men who use Twitter to share their stories, and will work hard every day to improve our processes to protect those voices.”
Do you agree with how Twitter handles monitoring content? Let us know @BritandCo.
(Photo via Michael Tullberg/Getty)