LGBTQ community reports more abuse on Twitter since Musk takeover: survey

AP Photo/Jeff Chiu
A sign at Twitter headquarters is shown in San Francisco, Friday, Nov. 18, 2022.

LGBTQ activists and organizations say hateful and abusive speech has surged on Twitter since Elon Musk bought the social media platform, according to a new survey.

A majority of LGBTQ activists and organizations say they have encountered more hateful and abusive speech on Twitter since Musk’s acquisition of the social media giant, according to a survey from Amnesty International USA, GLAAD and the Human Rights Campaign, putting in the spotlight what civil rights organizations say is the company’s inability to protect the LGBTQ community from harrassment.

The survey of 11 LGBTQ organizations and nine high-profile LGBTQ individuals found that 60 percent of respondents have seen an increase in such abuse and the other 40 percent have seen the same level of treatment since Musk took over in October 2022. None of the respondents reported a decrease in the abuse.

The angst over the treatment of LGBTQ people on the platform comes as Musk has implemented an upheaval of the company’s structure. He fired Twitter’s Global Human Rights Team and much of the infrastructure of Twitter’s Trust and Safety team has been gutted.

“Twitter must do more to protect LGBTQ+ activists and organizations on the platform,” said Michael Kleinman, the senior director of technology and human rights at Amnesty International USA, a leading human rights group, in a statement. “Twitter considers itself a ‘common digital town square,’ yet it’s a town square where LGBTQ+ voices are all too often shouted down and silenced by constant hateful speech and harassment.”

Twitter was under the microscope on Capitol Hill this week, with former employees and individuals affiliated with the company testifying in front of a House panel. But instead of the issue of abuse and harassment on the platform, Republicans focused on trying to reveal the political bias of the company against conservatives. 

Tags Elon Musk Elon Musk LGBTQ republicans Twitter

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