Twitter’s quest to fix its platform continues, this time with an experimental replies moderation feature. The “Hide Tweet” feature will be a public experiment, but it’s not clear yet who will have access to it.
Security researcher Jane Manchun Wong shared a screengrab of the tool on Thursday, writing that the Hide Tweet feature will let original posters hide and unhide tweet replies. A spokesperson for Twitter said the company will be testing the tool for now to see whether it can facilitate healthier conversations on the platform—which, as anyone who’s ever been on Twitter understands, is no small goal.
Michelle Yasmeen Haq, a senior product manager at Twitter, tweeted a thread about the feature, writing that Hide Tweet would serve a purpose not currently offered by the block, mute, or report options.
“With this feature, the person who started a conversation could choose to hide replies to their tweets. The hidden replies would be viewable by others through a menu option,” Yasmeen Haq said. “We think the transparency of the hidden replies would allow the community to notice and call out situations where people use the feature to hide content they disagree with. We think this can balance the product experience between the original Tweeter and the audience.”
A Twitter spokesperson said that the platform is exploring ways to give users more control over what they see on in their feeds. Replies moderation would definitely appear to do that. But it also doesn’t fix Twitter, and it definitely doesn’t curb abuse on the platform. Instead, it kind of shifts the responsibility of cleaning up the garbage to users—which isn’t ideal, but still seems better than not having it at all.
This feature also seems like a much better idea than Jack Dorsey’s tweet clarification tool, though who knows if that’s still in the works.