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Twitter puts verification process work on hold to focus on elections integrity

Twitter’s head of prod­uct says his team is paus­ing work on the Bluecheck/Verification process to focus on the health of the app ahead of elec­tions.

In March, Twit­ter CEO Jack Dorsey said Twit­ter intends to open ver­i­fi­ca­tion to every­one as it works to improve the health of the plat­form. But, accord­ing to a recent update from Twitter’s new head of prod­ucts, Kayvon Beykpour, the com­pa­ny is paus­ing its work on the ver­i­fi­ca­tion process to give its full efforts over to elec­tions integri­ty.

Beykpour shared an inter­nal email he sent his team via his Twit­ter account this week, explain­ing why the com­pa­ny was stop­ping its work on the Bluecheck/Verification process for now.

From Kayvon Beykpour’s email:

Though the cur­rent state of ver­i­fi­ca­tion is def­i­nite­ly not ide­al (opaque cri­te­ria and process, incon­sis­ten­cies in our pro­ce­dures, exter­nal frus­tra­tions from cus­tomers), I don’t believe we have the band­width to address this holis­ti­cal­ly (pol­i­cy, process, prod­uct, and a plan around how and when these fit togeth­er) with­out com­ing at the cost of oth­er pri­or­i­ties and dis­tract­ing the team.

Twitter’s prod­uct team is focused on infor­ma­tion qual­i­ty as the US midterm elec­tions are less than four months away. Beykpour says elec­tions integri­ty is Twitter’s high­est pri­or­i­ty, and that once it makes more progress in this area, Twit­ter will address the Ver­i­fi­ca­tion process.

After being plagued with mali­cious con­tent dur­ing the 2016 elec­tion cycle, Twit­ter has invest­ed much of its efforts this year in improv­ing the health of the app, aim­ing to safe­guard itself from bad actors, spam and bot activ­i­ty. So far this year, the com­pa­ny has mod­i­fied the way con­ver­sa­tions hap­pen, rolled out new polit­i­cal ad poli­cies and launched its ad trans­paren­cy cen­ter.

Accord­ing to Twitter’s trans­paren­cy report released last month, the com­pa­ny is cur­rent­ly remov­ing 214 per­cent more spam­my accounts year over year. Last week, it delet­ed locked accounts from fol­low­er lists, result­ing in users with sig­nif­i­cant fol­low­ings los­ing, on aver­age, 2–3 per­cent of their fol­low­ers.

Beykpour says his team should be able to return to hon­ing the Ver­i­fi­ca­tion process in approx­i­mate­ly four weeks. Accord­ing to Dorsey’s com­ments from ear­li­er this year, the com­pa­ny wants its ver­i­fi­ca­tion process to be scal­able, and to pro­ceed in a way that removes Twit­ter from the process as much as pos­si­ble to elim­i­nate any bias.

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By |2018-07-24T06:12:19+00:00July 21st, 2018|Industry News|Comments Off on Twitter puts verification process work on hold to focus on elections integrity