Los Angeles DA's office quits Twitter after 'vicious' replies to Pride parade tweet

The Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office archived its Twitter account due to homophobic comments made in response to a Pride parade tweet the office made.

The office, which went by the handle @LADAOffice, said Thursday the replies were “vicious” and Twitter failed to remove the replies after they were reported.

"Our decision to archive our Twitter account was not an easy one," the office said in a statement to USA TODAY. "It came after a series of distressing comments over time, culminating in a shocking response to photographs we posted celebrating LADA's first known entry into a Pride parade."

“Our decision to archive our Twitter account was not an easy one,” the office said in a statement to the Associated Press. “It came after a series of distressing comments over time, culminating in a shocking response to photographs we posted celebrating LADA’s first known entry into a Pride parade.

The comments included everything from “homophobic and transphobic slurs to sexually explicit and graphic images,” the office said in its statement. The comments were still on the social media platform more than 24 hours after they were reported.

Some social media users have accused the office of trying to avoid feedback from the public this week.

"We cannot handle criticism as this is harmful to our self-esteem, which must be protected above all other concerns," wrote one Twitter user on Wednesday. "We are retreating to echo chambers where we and our constituents will be safe from any dissenting thoughts."

The office also said archiving the Twitter account is not an attempt to avoid criticism though.

"Feedback is important and we welcome open dialogue on all remaining platforms, we enjoy engaging with the community," the office said. "In addition, we’ve hosted virtual town halls, installed advisory boards and started an #asktheda segment on social media to improve access and engagement with the public."

Twitter is getting a new CEO:Elon Musk's likely successor is NBCUniversal's Linda Yaccarino

Online harassment:They were flooded by online hatred. They didn't know a targeted campaign caused it.

Digital hatred towards the LGBTQ community has increased since Musk took over Twitter, activists say

Just this week, the Washington, D.C.-based advocacy group Center for Countering Digital Hate pushed Twitter’s new CEO, Linda Yaccarino, to stop hate on Twitter.

“Homophobic and transphobic hate has risen dramatically on Twitter following Elon Musk's takeover,” the organization tweeted, tagging her.

According to the group, tweets and retweets mentioning the LGBTQ+ community and "grooming" slurs jumped 119% since Elon Musk took over the social media site in 2022.

In another report, the group's researchers collected tweets promoting hate from 100 Twitter Blue subscribers. The team reported the tweets to Twitter and four days after the reports were filed, Twitter had failed to address 99% of the posts and 100% of the accounts were still active. 

“In the one instance that Twitter removed a hateful tweet, the account from which it was tweeted remains active,” the organization said on its website.

One reason for the lack of action on Twitter’s part may be Musk’s staffing cuts, the AP reported. The platform doesn’t have the staffing to handle the influx of reported tweets, which delve include hate speech, graphic material and harassment. Musk has also criticized Twitter’s past policies and called them too restricting.

The Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office said Thursday that those who want to keep up with them can do so on Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram and TikTok.

The office reiterated its reasons for leaving Twitter in its statement and told USA TODAY it “will not be complicit and utilize a platform that promotes such hateful rhetoric.”

Contributing: Associated Press

No comments:

Powered by Blogger.