Defending and respecting the rights of people using our service

Defending and respecting the user’s voice is one of our core values at Twitter. This value is a two-part commitment to freedom of expression and privacy. Transparency is also an important part of this commitment. In that spirit, Twitter wants to publicly share how we translate this core value into our decision-making.

Twitter employees across the company consider our core values everyday in all aspects of their work, from product design to how we handle legal requests for account information and beyond. This starts on day one at Twitter with new hire orientation and is reinforced continually in our internal and external communications, as well as our actions. This is core to our product and our company at every level including our executive team and board of directors.

This is a global commitment, and while grounded in the United States Bill of Rights and the European Convention on Human Rights, it is informed by a number of additional sources including the members of our Trust and Safety Council, relationships with advocates and activists around the globe, and by works such as United Nations Principles on Business and Human Rights.

Some examples of steps we take to defend and respect our users include:¹

  • Our transparency report — published bi-annually since 2012; 
  • Our user notice policies;
  • Challenges to court orders to remove content from our platform or disclose user data;
  • Publishing content removal demands to Lumen (fka Chilling Effects); 
  • Providing in service notices when content is removed or withheld or accounts suspended; 
  • Working with groups and coalitions, in the U.S. and globally, to support legal changes that enhance user privacy or to fight laws and legal decisions which threaten to chill speech and undermine privacy;
  • Giving people access to their account information;
  • Publishing a range of resources for people and organizations using our service, the public and law enforcement
  • Sharing clear guidelines about appropriate uses of Twitter’s Public APIs and Gnip data products

While this is a whole company effort, we also have a Trust and Safety team whose mandate is the protection of the people and organizations using our service and building trust in Twitter. This is their full-time job and it has been since the team was created in 2008. Our Trust and Safety team plays a key role in decisionmaking in the company. The team helps the company understand the impact certain decisions may have on the people and organizations using our service, for example: entering new markets; releasing new product features; changing our Terms of Service, Privacy Policy and Twitter Rules; facilitating acquisitions and integrations with Twitter; and developing new policies for content on the platform.

Trust and Safety, reporting to our General Counsel, is a key partner for stakeholders across the company and works in tandem with product, engineering, user services, sales, public policy, and legal to help Twitter keep the people and organizations using our service front and center when we make decisions.

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¹ Detailed examples are regularly included in the explanatory text of our Transparency Reports.

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