Twitter Auditing Abuse on its Platform by Cutting Checks to Professors

By CultureBanx Team

  • Reviewed more than 230 proposals from Universities
  • Twitter reported its workforce is only 3.4% black

As part of the social media giant’s plan to end the toxic culture of abuse by users, Twitter (TWTR +3.19%) is using college professors to audit its platform. These educational experts are being tasked with identifying where the issues are coming from that have run rampant on its platform for years, and how to finally get rid of them.

Why This Matters: The company claims to have reviewed more than 230 proposals from around the world, though none of the winners were black professors or from HBCU’s. Two educators from Syracuse University, along with one from Italy’s Bocconi University and professors from Dutch based universities Delft and Leiden are conducting the research for measuring healthy conversations.

Twitter stated they are being challenged to think critically about how to define and measure the health of public conversation. It seems like it would be difficult to obtain clear results when the people conducting and overseeing the study are pretty homogeneous. Especially when 26% of U.S. adults on Twitter are black, making them the micro-blogging sites biggest user group, according to Pew Research.

In fact this audit is a clear reflection of the lack of diversity internally at the company. Earlier this year Twitter reported its black workforce was only at 3.4%, at the end of 2017.

Situational Awareness: It’s going to be very difficult for Twitter to have a holistic approach to remove bullying which impacts all ethnic groups, when the people calling the shots have very little representation from its largest user group. At this point it’s still unclear how much the company is spending on this research, as well as exactly when the study will end.

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