Twitter now allows its users to disable replies

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Twitter has rolled out a feature that allows users to moderate their replies by choosing who could respond to their tweets.

Before the release of this feature, anybody could reply to a tweet, leading to a dumpster fire of replies for some users.

Now, Twitter users with beta access can decide who can reply to which of their tweets on a tweet-by-tweet basis. As you can imagine, this feature could fundamentally change how many use the platform altogether.

Self-moderation across social media platforms is nothing new. YouTube and Instagram, for instance, already allow users to disable comments on a post-by-post basis. When it comes to Twitter, though, the platform thrives on conversations between its users.

Keep in mind that those conversations haven’t always been the most pleasant. For many, disabling replies in Twitter is a step in the right direction.

Overall, the ability to control who replies to a tweet could help remedy one of Twitter’s largest problems: harassment. Many Twitter users can attest to being inundated by replies from angry strangers with nothing to do but harass their fellow Twitter users. Though these conversations take place online, they can still be unexpected, overwhelming and remarkably difficult to cope with.

By allowing users to turn off replies, Twitter is also impacting how various communities and cultures interact when it comes to ideological, cultural and political differences. Without a means to reply to a tweet, that knee-jerk reaction that often leads to brigading may dissipate.

Of course, disabling replies on the platform isn’t going to fix all of Twitter’s problems. Trolls will always troll, even if it means finding another means to do so. As unfortunate as that is, it seems to be the reality we find ourselves in today.