Elon Musk Confirms Controversial Removal of X Blocking Feature
X's new owner Elon Musk has announced that the platform will remove the ability for users to block other accounts, in a controversial move just months after his high-profile takeover of the social media company, formerly known as Twitter.
The blocking function, which allows users to restrict specific accounts from contacting them, seeing their posts or following them, will be deleted, Musk confirmed in a post on Friday.
Musk, who describes himself as a "free speech absolutist", said the platform will retain the mute function which removes content from specified accounts without notifying them.
However, some critics argue his approach is irresponsible. Since the takeover, researchers have found an increase in hate speech and antisemitic content on X, while some governments have accused the platform of not doing enough to moderate its content.
Removing or limiting the block feature could bring X into conflict with guidelines set by Apple's App Store and Google's Play Store.
Apple requires apps with user-generated content to have the ability to block abusive users. Similarly, Google demands apps provide in-app blocking of content and users.
Responding to concerns from anti-bullying campaigner Monica Lewinsky, X's chief executive Linda Yaccarino defended Musk's vision, stating "Our users' safety on X is our number one priority. And we're building something better than the current state of block and mute. Please keep the feedback coming."
Elon Musk will remove X's account blocking feature despite safety concerns
Critics argue the move could increase harmful content and clash with app store rules
Twitter insists it is prioritising user safety and building 'something better'