New York Times White House correspondent Maggie Haberman says she is taking a break from Twitter, explaining in an op-ed in the newspaper that the platform "no longer works well" for her.
Haberman, who is widely regarded as one of the most prolific reporters covering President TrumpDonald TrumpTexas announces election audit in four counties after Trump demand Schumer sets Monday showdown on debt ceiling-government funding bill Pennsylvania AG sues to block GOP subpoenas in election probe MORE and his White House, has maintained a consistent presence on Twitter to share stories and insights.
But in the op-ed, published online Friday, Haberman cited the "viciousness, toxic partisan anger, intellectual dishonesty, motive-questioning and sexism" that have emerged on Twitter as her motivation for stepping back from the platform.
"Twitter is now an anger video game for many users," she writes. "It is the only platform on which people feel free to say things they’d never say to someone’s face. For me, it had become an enormous and pointless drain on my time and mental energy."
Haberman also recalled how she found herself in the middle of "vicious Twitter attacks" and the pressure she felt to respond to those broadsides. Those attacks, she writes, have become worse under Trump, who often uses the platform to level assaults of his own.
"I found myself in the middle of swarms of vicious Twitter attacks, something that has happened to many other journalists in the Trump era," she writes. "He creates the impression that the media is almost as powerful as he is in his incessant, personalized attacks on reporters on Twitter."
Haberman's op-ed drew a response from Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey, who acknowledged some of the problems that she pointed out, but said that the company is working to address them.
"Fundamentally, we need to focus more on the conversational dynamics within Twitter," Dorsey tweeted. "We haven’t paid enough consistent attention here. Better organization, more context, helping to identify credibility, ease of use."
"Challenging work and would love to hear your thoughts and ideas," he added.
Fundamentally, we need to focus more on the conversational dynamics within Twitter. We haven’t paid enough consistent attention here. Better organization, more context, helping to identify credibility, ease of use.— jack (@jack) July 21, 2018
Challenging work and would love to hear your thoughts and ideas.
Haberman isn't the only media figure who has tired of Twitter. CNN's Chris Cillizza said last week that he was “about done” with the platform, after some users mocked his child’s peanut allergy.
“We are talking about a 9 year old. Feel free to hate me. But don’t mock my son’s peanut allergy. Classless and indefensible,” Cillizza wrote.