After backtracking on its plans to start shutting down inactive accounts, Twitter is now actively working on a new way for people to memorialize accounts.
Earlier this week reports surfaced detailing Twitter’s plans to shut down “inactive accounts,” the definition of which being those that hadn’t logged in for over 6 months. Owners of these accounts started receiving emails to log in until the 11th of December, or else. Due to outcry from users, however, Twitter has now said it “will not be removing any inactive accounts” until it has created a way for people to memorialize the accounts of the deceased.
How memorialized accounts will work on the platform is anyone’s guess at this point, but I would imagine we’ll be hearing about it soon.
Initially, to “respond and clarify,” Twitter explained that there’s always been an inactive account policy, but it’s never been enforced consistently. The company also explained that the deletion of inactive accounts would have begun in the EU (in part due to regulations like GDPR).
Then, it started backtracking on its initial plans altogether, explaining,
“We’ve heard you on the impact that this would have on the accounts of the deceased. This was a miss on our part. We will not be removing any inactive accounts until we create a new way for people to memorialize accounts.”
We’ve heard you on the impact that this would have on the accounts of the deceased. This was a miss on our part. We will not be removing any inactive accounts until we create a new way for people to memorialize accounts.
— Twitter Support (@TwitterSupport) November 27, 2019
Finally, Twitter also explained that it may “broaden” the enforcement of its inactivity policy in the near future in order to comply with other regulations like GDPR around the world, in order to “ensure the integrity of the service.”
When that happens, users will hear about it. Until then, all accounts – active or inactive – will be safe.
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