MP Yvette Cooper renews pressure on Twitter over abuse and offensive content after Crown Prosecution Service announces crackdown

 
Lynsey Barber
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Yvette Cooper's calls come after the Crown Prosecution Service said it would take action (Source: Getty)

Twitter has come under renewed pressure from MP Yvette Cooper over the way it handles abuse and offensive content on the platform.

The chair of the home affairs select committee has said the tech company is doing "too little, too slowly" and must do more to act on "abuse, violent threats and intimidation".

Twitter claims to stop hate speech but they just don’t do it in practice. Vile racist, misogynist and threatening abuse gets reported to them but they are too slow to act, so they just keep giving a platform to hatred and extremism. It’s disgraceful and irresponsible," Cooper said in a letter to the company also signed by Sam Smethers, the head of the Fawcett Society .

Read more: Tech giants respond as PM accuses them of being "safe space" for terrorism

Cooper, who gave Twitter and other tech companies a serious grilling over how they handle online abuse, hate speech and extremism alongside other MPs on the committee earlier this year, called again for details of the number of staff it has working on moderation and monitoring.

None of the firms would be drawn on the exact number of staff it had working in this area.

The Labour MP has also asked Twitter to provide information on how long it takes on average to investigate reports and remove tweets, and what it's doing to speed things up.

According to research from Reclaim the Internet, set up by Cooper, threats to prominent women on Twitter, including MPs Diane Abbott and Luciana Berger, as well as Brexit campaigner Gina Miller, had not been removed after a week of being reported.

The news comes a day after the Crown Prosecution Service said it will crack down on hate crime online, treating it as seriously as offline offences.

Twitter had not responded to a request for comment at the time of publication.

Read more: Twitter's user growth has totally stagnated (and it has no idea why)

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