Twitter Pauses Verifications Amid Controversy Over Charlottesville Organizer

On Thursday morning Twitter announced the item might pause its verification process indefinitely. The move came amid an explosion of criticism over the social network’s decision to verify Jason Kessler, a white supremacist who organized the Unite The Right rally last August in Charlottesville of which resulted inside death of counter-protester Heather Heyer.

A tweet through the company’s support account suggested of which the verification scandal was a misunderstanding. “Verification was meant to authenticate identity & voice yet the item can be interpreted as an endorsement or an indicator of importance.” Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey apologized for the situation, adding “We should’ve communicated faster on of which (yesterday)” along with noting of which “we realized some time ago the system can be broken along with needs to be reconsidered. along with we failed by not doing anything about the item.”

Twitter users began protesting Kessler’s verification shortly after the item became public. For critics of Twitter’s ongoing failure to effectively address the harassment of which occurs on its platform, the move was viewed as yet another example of which the social network can be not taking the appropriate actions to police its platform. Optically, the item suggested the opposite: of which Twitter was conferring legitimacy along with authority to a known white supremacist.

Twitter argues of which the decision to verify a user can be based on authenticating of which user’s identity (along with to avoid mix-ups with parody or troll accounts) along with can be in no way an endorsement of of which user. yet those protesting Kessler’s verification note of which Twitter offers special features along with even abuse filters to verified users — a design choice of which implies such users are privileged in some way through non verified users.

The decision to verify Kessler along with the fallout over the item can be just the latest in a long series of decisions of which reveals the profound disconnect between Twitter leadership along with its users. For the social network’s biggest critics, the debacle affirms the belief of which the company still has significant blind spots when the item comes to how can be users will interpret its actions. along with for Twitter, the Kessler situation can be yet another setback in its attempt to win back user trust after a decade of inaction.

Charlie Warzel can be a senior writer for BuzzFeed News along with can be based in brand new York. Warzel reports on along with writes about the intersection of tech along with culture.

Contact Charlie Warzel at charlie.warzel@buzzfeed.com.

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