Twitter halts plans to delete inactive accounts following backlash

  • Posted on: 1 December 2019
  • By: Presenters

Twitter has announced it is halting its plan to delete abandoned accounts after users expressed concerns that their dead loved ones’ profiles would be deleted.

On Wednesday, Twitter revealed that all accounts that have been inactive for the last six months would be deleted from the site, which would include those of deceased users. 

Unlike Facebook, Twitter does not currently have an option for people to memorialise the accounts of those who have died. 

Following the announcement, many people pleaded with the site to keep the accounts open, lest the digital footprints of the deceased be erased. 

In response to the feedback, Twitter announced that its original decision, which would only impact accounts in the EU for now and that it will not be removing any inactive accounts until it creates a way for people to memorialise them. 

It admitted not having a policy in place was a “miss on our part”. The firm said it was taking action on inactive accounts due to regulatory concerns.

It said once it had a full process in place, account deactivations would occur in the EU first. This was in order, Twitter said, to comply with the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), reported BBC.

“We apologise for the confusion and will keep you all posted,” the company said in a series of tweets posted on Wednesday.

On Monday Twitter had begun contacting users who hadn’t logged in in the past six months, warning them that they would have their accounts deleted unless they signed in and agreed to the firm’s latest privacy policy.

Twitter concluded the announcement apologising for the fear it caused. 

“We apologise for the confusion and concerns we caused and will keep you posted,” the site said. 

The gesture was met with gratitude on the platform, where people thanked the company for listening to the concerns of its users.