Is Twitter trying to hurt its users’ feelings?
On Wednesday, the social media platform confirmed it had tested a feature that offered personalized unfollow suggestions. Yes, unfollow.
“We know that people want a relevant Twitter timeline. One way to do this is by unfollowing people they don’t engage with regularly,” a Twitter representative told Slate. “We ran an incredibly limited test to surface accounts that people were not engaging with to check if they’d like to unfollow them.”
The test reportedly concluded after only a few days. Twitter did not confirm whether or not the run was successful, or if the “unfollow suggestions” will receive a proper roll out.
You can check out screenshots of the potential feature in the tweets below.
Naturally, news of the test was met with polarizing reactions. Some expressed excitement, assuming the feature would help clean up their timeline; however, others were concerned that these suggestions would fuel criticism of Twitter’s perceived bias.
The site has received growing backlash from the country’s conservative sect, as President Donald Trump recently accused Twitter of trying to censor right-leaning accounts through “shadow banning”—a term that describes a practice in which an account is discreetly banned. Twitter has denied the allegations.
Though this feature could improve the user experience, there’s no doubt that it would spark varying degrees of drama.