Parkland survivors face ‘targeted abuse and harassment’

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Lorenzo Prado, a student from Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, speaks at the Florida State Capitol building on February 21, 2018 in Tallahassee, Florida.

Image: Photo by Don Juan Moore/Getty Images)Getty Images

Twitter is stepping in to deal with the “targeted abuse and harassment” facing many of the survivors of the Parkland shooting.

Since the teens have emerged as powerful voices on social media following last week’s shooting, they’ve had to face what many other high profile Twitter users before them have dealt with: abuse and harassment. 

This time, the social media platform is wasting no time in addressing the issue which “goes against everything we stand for at Twitter.” The company says it’s “actively working on” responding to reports of abuse and harassment.

It’s also using its anti-spam tools “to weed out malicious automation” targeting Parkland survivors and “the topics they are raising.” (Earlier in the day, Twitter announced new rules meant to crack down on bots.)

Twitter also confirmed that it had verified “a number of” accounts of Parkland survivors. The company previously announced plans for a new verification system earlier in the year, after it paused the program following widespread criticism. 

Twitter’s updates come as the Parkland survivors have morphed into very vocal and public faces leading a new debate about gun control in the country. That role has quickly made them targets for harassment and conspiracy theories, which have also cropped up on Facebook and YouTube.





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