Twitter rolls out ‘hide replies’ feature globally in an effort to make platform less toxic

Social media platform Twitter on Thursday launched a feature letting users across the world hide unwanted replies to their tweets. The feature intends to give people more control over their conversations, the company said in a blog post.

The feature was tested in the United States, Canada and Japan before the global launch. It is part of Twitter’s efforts to make the platform less toxic and more user-friendly. “The oon is a new way to shut out noise,” the company added.

“Currently, repliers can shift the topic or tone of a discussion and derail what you and your audience want to talk about,” said Suzanne Xie, Twitter’s director of product management. “We learned that the feature is a useful new way to manage your conversations.”

Users can hide replies to their tweets by tapping a grey icon on their post and selecting “hide replies”. The hidden responses can be viewed by everyone by pressing an icon that will appear on the tweets.

The San Francisco-based company will also check with users who use the feature if they want to block the owner of the account.

Twitter said during testing it found that people mostly hid replies they found “irrelevant, off-topic or annoying”. Public figures such as politicians and journalists have not been hiding replies “very often” so far, the company added. Xie said some people did not want to hide replies due to fear of retaliation and said Twitter would continue to get feedback on the matter.

The company is also working on new controls to ensure healthier discussions on the platform.