‘Shadow Banning’ Written Into Twitter’s New Terms Of Service, May Limit Visibility Of Some Users

Kevin Mwanza
Written by Kevin Mwanza
Twitter shadow banning
Twitter updated its terms of service at the beginning of 2020 to allow “shadow banning”, the practice of suppressing content without users’ knowledge.

Social media platform Twitter updated its terms of service at the beginning of 2020 to allow “shadow banning” that may limit the visibility of some users and allow throttling of information shared on the platform.

Twitter’s new terms of service which went into effect on Jan. 1, 2020 state that the company may “limit distribution or visibility of any content on the service.”

Shadow banning is the practice of suppressing or hiding content legally without users’ knowledge.

The new line of text in Twitter’s terms of service reads:

“We may also remove or refuse to distribute any content on the services, limit distribution or visibility of any content on the service, suspend or terminate users, and reclaim usernames without liability to you.”

Twitter’s release of these updated terms comes days after Facebook started looking for ways to shadow ban after rolling a similar policy out on Instagram in 2019.

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In 2018, Twitter strongly denied that it shadow bans users in a post titled “Setting the record straight on shadow banning“.

An investigative news site, Project Veritas, which exposed Twitter’s shadow banning practices, had its ads account banned due to a video expose that featured a former software engineer at the social media company.