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| 19 September, 2017

Twitter reports progress on weeding out users advocating violence

Logo of the Twitter and Facebook are seen through magnifier on display in this illustration taken in Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina, December 16, 2015. Image used for illustrative purpose.

Logo of the Twitter and Facebook are seen through magnifier on display in this illustration taken in Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina, December 16, 2015. Image used for illustrative purpose.

Twitter said that its internal controls were allowing it to weed out accounts being used for "promotion of terrorism.



BRUSSELS - Twitter Inc said that its internal controls were allowing it to weed out accounts being used for "promotion of terrorism" earlier rather than responding to government requests to close them down.

U.S. and European governments have been pressuring social media companies including Twitter, Facebook Inc and Alphabet Inc's Google to fight harder against online radicalisation, particularly by violent Islamist groups.

Twitter said it had removed 299,649 accounts in the first half of this year for the "promotion of terrorism", a 20 percent decline from the previous six months. Three-quarters of those accounts were suspended before posting their first tweet.

Less than 1 percent of account suspensions were due to government requests, the company said, while 95 percent were thanks to Twitter's internal efforts to combat extremist content with "proprietary tools", up from 74 percent in the last transparency report.

Twitter defines "promotion of terrorism" as actively inciting or promoting violence "associated with internationally recognised terrorist organisations."

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The vast majority of notices from governments concerned "abusive behaviour", which includes violent threats, harassment, hateful conduct and impersonation.



(Reporting by Julia Fioretti; Editing by Keith Weir) ((julia.fioretti@thomsonreuters.com; +32 2287 6875; Reuters Messaging: julia.fioretti.thomsonreuters.com@reuters.net))