Twitter steps up fight against sexual harassment

A portrait of the Twitter logo in Ventura, California on December 21, 2013. (File photo by Reuters)
Updated 18 October 2017

Twitter steps up fight against sexual harassment

SAN FRANCISCO: Twitter has announced tough new rules on tweets containing “non-consensual nudity” and sexual harassment, which could be seen as fallout from the Harvey Weinstein abuse scandal.
The rules will come into force in the coming weeks, Twitter said in a statement late Tuesday, after company co-founder Jack Dorsey on Friday posted a series of tweets promising policy changes.
The San Francisco-based social media giant will “immediately and permanently suspend any account we identify as the original poster/source of non-consensual nudity and/or if a user makes it clear they are intentionally posting said content to harass their target,” the statement read.
Twitter defines “non-consensual nudity” as including “content like upskirt imagery, ‘creep shots,’ and hidden camera content.”
Since people appearing in these pictures “often do not know the material exists, we will not require a report from a target in order to remove it,” the statement said.
Twitter said that while it recognizes that there is “an entire genre of pornography dedicated to this type of content, it’s nearly impossible for us to distinguish when this content may/may not have been produced and distributed consensually.
“We would rather error on the side of protecting victims and removing this type of content when we become aware of it,” the statement read.
Twitter also said that sexually charged conversations and the exchange of sexual media will now be “unacceptable,” and promised to take action when such exchanges are reported by participants or by observers.
Twitter’s statement follows an uproar caused by the temporary suspension of the account of Rose McGowan, an actress who says that Weinstein raped her.
The account was suspended after McGowan posted an obscenity directed at actor Ben Affleck, whom she said lied about his ignorance of Weinstein’s history of sexual abuse.
Twitter however said her account was suspended because McGowan broke usage rules by including a personal phone number in a tweet.
Weinstein was fired from his job as co-chairman of The Weinstein Company on October 8, and resigned from the company board of directors on Tuesday.
Some 40 actresses, including stars Gwyneth Paltrow, Angelina Jolie and Mira Sorvino, have come forward saying they were sexually harassed by the Hollywood film producer.
The revelations sparked an avalanche of messages on platforms like Twitter and Facebook from women all over the world, using the hashtag #MeToo to speak out on and condemn experiences of sexual harassment.


Netflix, Apple cross swords in Indian streaming market

Updated 12 September 2019

Netflix, Apple cross swords in Indian streaming market

  • Netflix launched in India in 2016 and two of its Indian-made series have won critical acclaim — “Sacred Games” and “Leila”
  • US technology giant Apple on Wednesday announced the launch of its streaming platform Apple TV+ in India, hoping to upend competition

MUMBAI: Competition in India’s booming streaming market is heating up as Netflix joins forces with a director of Bollywood feel-good blockbusters and Apple launches its TV platform for 99 rupees ($1.39) a month.
Netflix announced late Wednesday a long-term partnership with Karan Johar’s Dharmatic Entertainment to make a range of new fiction and non-fiction series and films for the platform.
Johar has directed eight films including “Kuch Kuch Hota Hai” with Bollywood megastar Shah Rukh Khan, and “Raazi,” nominated for best picture at next week’s Indian International Film Academy (IIFA) Awards, dubbed the Bollywood Oscars.
“It’s going to be P.H.A.T — pretty hot and tempting,” said Johar, whose Dharma Entertainment is one of India’s biggest production firms and which already teamed up with Netflix for the successful “Lust Stories” anthology.
Netflix launched in India in 2016 and two of its Indian-made series have won critical acclaim — “Sacred Games” starring Saif Ali Khan and Nawazuddin Siddiqui, and “Leila” with Huma Qureishi.
But Netflix faces stiff competition in Asia’s third-largest economy as Amazon’s Prime Video, Disney’s Hotstar, Alt Balaji and other local platforms jostle for digital subscriptions and eyeballs.
US technology giant Apple on Wednesday announced the launch of its streaming platform Apple TV+ in India, hoping to upend competition.
Netflix is available in India from 199 rupees a month and as millions of first-time users access Internet in Asia’s third-largest economy, analysts expect competition to intensify.
India’s video-streaming industry is expected to grow at nearly 22 percent per annum to 119 billion rupees ($1.7 billion) by 2023 according to consultancy PwC, Bloomberg News reported.
Netflix chief Reed Hastings has said the company’s goal is 100 million customers in India — almost 25 times its estimated subscriber base there as of this year, Bloomberg said.