Elon Musk, the CEO of Twitter, has dismissed claims that he removed a suicide prevention feature on the platform.
The feature, known as #ThereIsHelp, is usually placed as a banner at the top of search results for certain topics.
It provides hotlines for organisations focusing on mental health, HIV, vaccines, child sexual exploitation, COVID-19, gender-based violence, and natural disasters in different countries.
On Friday, Reuters, citing sources, claimed the micro-blogging took down the feature on Musk’s order.
The outlet further said shortly after its report, Ella Irwin, Twitter’s head of trust and safety, said the move was a temporary measure to revamp the feature.
“We have been fixing and revamping our prompts. They were just temporarily removed while we do that,” Reuters quoted the email from Irwin to have read.
The alleged removal of the feature elicited a wave of backlash on social media.
In a now-deleted tweet, Jane Manchun Wong, a software developer, faulted the timing of Twitter’s action.
“This is the worst time of the year to remove the suicide prevention feature. Instead of leaving a time gap without a suicide prevention feature for a revamp, they could’ve kept the old prompt and replaced it with a new one when it’s ready,” Wong wrote.
But reacting to Wong’s post and other critics, Musk said the feature was not removed as claimed.
He added that while Twitter allows anti-suicide features, the platform was not created primarily to prevent suicide.
“1. The message is actually still up. This is fake news. 2. Twitter doesn’t prevent suicide,” he wrote.
1. The message is actually still up. This is fake news.
2. Twitter doesn’t prevent suicide.
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) December 24, 2022Advertisement
Musk has been in the news over his controversial policies since he acquired Twitter.
Copyright 2023 TheCable. All rights reserved. This material, and other digital content on this website, may not be reproduced, published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed in whole or in part without prior express written permission from TheCable.
Follow us on twitter @Thecablestyle