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Twitter now considers photos and videos “private information”

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  • 2 min read

Twitter has expanded its private information policy to include sharing personal media such as photos and videos without permission from individuals appearing in them. 

According to a notification on Tuesday, the company believes that “sharing personal media, such as images or videos, can potentially violate a person’s privacy, and may lead to emotional or physical harm.” In addition, Twitter will also take appropriate action per their enforcement options whenever a tweet with unauthorised private media is reported. 

These actions are divided into three categories, tweet-level, direct message-level, and account-level enforcement. Each has multiple actions ranging from warnings to outright blocking accounts and deleting tweets should a breach of regulations be detected. 

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Making Twitter safer?

The micro-blogging site states that they’ll require a first-person report or one from an authorised representative to decide whether or not a picture or video has been shared without permission. 

When reported and verified, the tweet will be removed. However, this policy does not apply to media featuring public figures or individuals when the shared media and accompanying Tweet text is shared in the public interest or “add value to public discourse.”

The context in which an image is shared plays an important part here. Twitter addresses this by saying that the company will always try to assess the context in which the content in question is shared and might even allow it to stay online in some cases, such as the image already being publicly available, being covered by mainstream media or once again if the accompanying Tweet text adds value to public discourse, is being shared in the public interest or is relevant to a community. 

However, if the purpose of sharing the media is harassment, intimidation or silence of an individual or public figure, the content will be removed under their abusive behaviour policy. In addition to this, any private nude images of public individuals will be actioned under Twitter’s non-consensual nudity policy. 

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Yadullah Abidi

Yadullah Abidi

Yadullah is a Computer Science graduate who writes/edits/shoots/codes all things cybersecurity, gaming, and tech hardware. When he's not, he streams himself racing virtual cars. He's been writing and reporting on tech and cybersecurity with websites like Candid.Technology and MakeUseOf since 2018. You can contact him here: