Twitter trolls spook Disney

The entertainment giant is reported to have passed on Twitter amid hate speech fears...

Twitter trolls spook Disney

Disneyland, Facebook

Walt Disney Co. is reported to have taken account of the possibility of its image being damaged when deciding to not table a bid for Twitter. Bloomberg reports that the company was concerned that on-going issues surrounding cyber abuse and bullying would hurt its reputation.

The financial outlet notes that this is not the only reason why the Mouse House did not continue with the takeover attempt. Twitter has been struggling to both attract new users and to generate revenue - its market valuation is close to €11bn. Some of Disney's largest investors called on the company to not buy the asset.

JPMorgan Chase & Co. and Guggenheim Partners LLC had both been hired by Disney to evaluate the merits of bidding for Twitter.

CNBC has also reported that Salesforce factored in concerns over the platform's abuse issues when deciding to pass on the company.

"We suck at dealing with abuse and trolls on the platform and we’ve sucked at it for years ... It’s no secret and the rest of the world talks about it every day. We lose core user after core user by not addressing simple trolling issues that they face every day," the then Twitter CEO (now former CEO) Dick Costolo said in a leaked internal memo in 2015.

Twitter can suspend user accounts which are deemed to be abusive, "We may suspend an account if it has been reported to us as violating our Rules surrounding abuse. When an account engages in abusive behavior, like sending threats to others or impersonating other accounts, we may suspend it temporarily or, in some cases, permanently," the company's guidelines state.

However, when signing up to a Twitter account no user information verification is needed, making it possible for trolls to create multiple accounts.

Earlier in 2016 the company established a Twitter Trust and Safety Council to deal with online abuse.