Tweets Need A Hide Button

Dave Winer recently made a post about why you got blocked.

1. I like to follow the Mentions tab in Twitter, so I can see who’s directing messages to me, or talking about me using my Twitter handle.

2. This is the Internet, so sometimes people say mean things. When they use your Twitter handle it shows up in the Mentions tab.

3. The mean stuff can sit there for hours, esp when things are quiet.

4. I think of them as turds.

5. Since I check the Mentions tab frequently, as much as 5 times an hour, I see these turds many times. Each time they get more annoying.

6. There’s no way to delete a tweet from the Mentions tab, without blocking the person.

7. Blocking has the side-effect of making me invisible to the person I’m blocking. This is totally unnecessary. I have no reason to want to stop someone from being able to read my tweets. It’s this one smelly turd they left that I don’t want to look at.

I agree, and I do this too. But none of us should have to do it.

The solution is pretty simple – Twitter should provide a one-click button that lets anybody hide any tweet on their feed.

And it stays hidden.

It’s not deleted – that’s a privilege that I don’t think anyone apart from the OP needs to have and only for their own material. And it’s only hidden for you. But if you click on that hide button then for all intents and purposes it is gone. Hidden tweets could be stored in a new, ‘hidden’ folder, and they stay that way until you change your mind.

Hide any given person’s tweets enough, and maybe Twitter notices and says, “You’ve hidden a lot of really annoying user‘s tweets – do you want to unfollow them?”

Maybe if everybody is hiding one particular user’s tweets too much, Twitter notices and says to them, “Hey, you’re an asshole. Try harder.”

Sometimes a block is exactly what is needed. Sometimes it’s a step too far. A hide button is a nice compromise.

(PS. And before I hear the inevitable: yes, you can hide tweets on TweetDeck and some other apps, but – again – this is not the same thing as being able to perform a function or have a feature available on Twitter itself. That is, on the actual platform. Hide a tweet on Twitter, and it’s hidden everywhere. Hide a tweet on TweetDeck, and it’s still there on HootSuite. And Twitter for iPhone. And your Blackberry. And Echofon. And so on.)