If Twitter is your social thing and the platform that you use to nurture your audience, then you’ve no doubt suffered the slings and arrows of trolls who just want to pick a fight. As I’ve written before, the best way to deal with an online flame war is to ignore it the best you can, but sometimes that just leads to an ongoing back and forth with loyal followers sliding into a never-ending battle with the troll. The problem is that the discourse can just prolong the negative energy around your brand when all you just want is to move on. The only Twitter weapon you had was to block the unwanted followers.
The problem with blocking is that the person is alerted that they’ve been blocked, which keeps them out of your feed, but they’ll still continue with the negative narrative elsewhere, or rally their friends to keep it going. Twitter’s been aware of this though, and has been toying with a new follower removal tool for a while. It’s now rolling that removal tool out to everyone.
To remove a follower, go to your profile and click “Followers,” then click the 3 dots and select “Remove this follower.” It’s that easy.
The reason why this is better than blocking is that the unwanted followers aren’t alerted, so as far as they know, everyone in your world is still seeing their tweets.
This won’t prevent someone from still seeing your tweets. Blocking them is the only way to prevent that, but removal might stop any possible retaliation from the troll’s friends.
Twitter is also testing a , which will automatically block an account that uses “potentially harmful language,” and it’s looking into more ways to . Bravo, for taking some much needed steps to protect people from online abuse.
It’s a shame that there are people who’s only mission online is to make snarky and useless comments that don’t move the conversation along or worse. I’m always amazed that the people that seem to know the least about a subject seem to have the loudest online mouths. Hopefully, Twitter’s new tools will go a long way to lowering their prominence.