Twitter seems to censor LGBTQ terms like “trans.”

Elon Musk Twitter

Social media users have noticed something odd on Twitter that amounts to censorship of common terms related to the LGBTQ+ community.

On Saturday (April 1), Twitter users and LGBTQ+ activists noticed that tweets shared via direct message (DM) no longer show a tweet preview if they contain certain words.

Sharing a tweet via DM should automatically preview the content of the tweet, but now users only see a simple link if the tweet contains the word “trans”, “LGBT”, “LGBT+” or “BLM” (Black Lives Matter) .

Of even greater concern are tweets containing terms widely viewed as offensive by the LGBTQ+ community – including “transidentified” and “t***n” – Preview as usual. As are tweets mentioning the trans-exclusive term “LGB”.

The concern about censorship in Twitter DMs is was repeated by the UK-based Trans Safety Networkwhich reported that preliminary testing suggests the platform is “debasing tweets with words.”

These include the words trans, gay, lesbian, queer, and bisexual.

Jane Fae*, Chair of Trans Media Watch, told PinkNews: “Elon Musk came to Twitter and made big claims about his commitment to ‘free speech’.

“Without an innocent reason for it – and it’s hard to imagine what an innocent reason would look like – this would refute the lie.”

When that happens, Fae said, “he’s clearly one of those selective free speech fighters who is only for speech that supports his own personal preferences.”

“As for arguments that ‘trans’ issues might be sensitive, it doesn’t make sense for DMs, and it certainly doesn’t make sense when you see that this ‘setting’ doesn’t affect terms like ‘tro*n’ or ‘ trans’ has. identifies what many trans people find deeply hurtful.”

While this could simply be a Twitter glitch, it’s perhaps unsurprising that LGBTQ+ users are concerned given the tenure of the platform’s owner, Elon Musk, posts mentioning the anti-LGBTQ+ “groomer” narrative will have increased by 119 percent.

In February, researchers at the Center for Countering Digital Hate found that Twitter is on track to make up to $19 million a year from ads on just 10 caustic anti-LGBTQ+ accounts run by Elon Musk since the announcement were restored under his general policy of amnesty.

PinkNews reached out to Twitter for comment.

* Jane Fae does not capitalize her name.

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Adam Bradshaw

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