Recently Twitter's CEO stepped down. Since then, the company has been gearing up to make some changes that many of the industry's insiders regard as long overdue.
Their recent blog post reads in part as follows:
"Sharing personal media, such as images or videos, can potentially violate a person's privacy, and may lead to emotional or physical harm.
The misuse of private media can affect everyone, but can have a disproportionate effect on women, activists, dissidents, and members of minority communities. When we receive a report that a Tweet contains unauthorized private media, we will now take action in line with our range of enforcement options."
The company does understand that sometimes users may share photos and/or videos in a bid to help a third party in a crisis and their new policy does include some provisions to try and assess those on a case-by-case basis.
In the same blog post the company had this to say about cases like that:
"In such cases, we may allow the images or videos to remain on the service.
For instance, we would take into consideration whether the image is publicly available and/or is being covered by mainstream/traditional media (newspapers, TV channels, online news sites), or if a particular image and the accompanying tweet text adds value to the public discourse, is being shared in public interest or is relevant to the community."
These are good changes overall. It will be interesting to see the early results of the company's case-by-case assessment where those exceptions are concerned. In any case kudos to Twitter for taking some important steps in the right direction.