Twitter has removed a policy that prohibited the targeted deadnaming or misgendering of transgender people… and somehow it’s gone under the radar. 

According to GLAAD (the Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation) this unannounced change to the hateful content guidelines occurred in early April. The rest of the webpage explaining these policies appears unchanged. Prior to the change, the guideline, enacted in 2018, the “Slurs and Tropes” subsection of the policy included the following: “This includes targeted misgendering or deadnaming of transgender individuals.” This line has since been removed.

Twitter’s guidelines still say that users may not attack others on the basis of their gender, gender identity or sexuality. Yet this removal of a clause that explicitly protects trans people is part of a continued trend in which Twitter has become more hostile toward LGBTQ+ individuals, especially considering the specific targeting of trans people. 

To make matters worse, post Musk’s takeover in October 2022, Twitter has disbanded its Trust and Safety council and reinstated the accounts of previously banned users like author Jordan Peterson and conservative satire outlet The Babylon Bee, both of which were sanctioned for the targeted harassment of transgender people.

“This decision to roll back LGBTQ safety pulls Twitter even more out of step with TikTok, Pinterest, and Meta, which all maintain similar policies to protect their transgender users at a time when anti-transgender rhetoric online is leading to real world discrimination and violence,” said GLAAD President and CEO Sarah Kate Ellis in a statement.

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