Since the beginning of the internet, online harassment has been a problem. We created this big, beautiful digital landscape that lets people be completely unfiltered, and we all do different things with this freedom. I, for example, use my platform to make sex memes and lightly neg Silicon Valley billionaires. Others take this opportunity to become the most scary-ass, shitbag, bigoted versions of themselves, hiding behind the comfy anonymity of their computer screens, facing no real consequences for threatening to rape, kill, and torture people.
Since it looks not great for social media companies to allow this on their platforms—not addressing bad behavior condones it, according to the liberal lamestream media—companies are now scrambling to deal with their massive abuse problems.
So on Friday, Instagram announced its plan to let users filter their comment streams, which came as no surprise. The Facebook-owned, image-sharing network plans to let each user build their own “banned words list” to filter out comments on their posts, a smart move that is mindful of the reality that everybody’s definition of harassment is different. The Washington Post reported that users will also have the ability to turn off comments for individual posts, while The Verge claims that Instagram has yet to decide whether it will let all users disable comments.
This comes on the heels of some recent high profile harassment incidents on Twitter, the nerdy debate team president to Instagram’s hot popular girl. In the past weeks—and months and years—the microblogging network has taken a lot of flack for the way it deals with abuse. Actress Leslie Jones quit the network after being the victim of a horribly racist campaign, initiated, in part, by Breitbart “tech” blogger Milo Yiannopolous. After receiving a flood of bad press about all this, Twitter fired back by banning Yiannopolous from its site.