Musk plans to delete Twitter/X’s block feature despite risks

Musk plans to delete Twitter/X's block feature despite risks

Musk’s plan to remove blocking from Twitter/X could violate Google Play and Apple App Store rules

Elon Musk, the owner of X, formerly Twitter, has announced that “Block is going to be deleted as a ‘feature'” from his platform, stating that the option will only be available for DMs. 

In recent months, Musk has made it clear that he does not like Twitter’s block feature, having complained about large block lists and blocking campaigns in the past. When Musk launched Twitter Blue, a lot of users mass blocked users of the subscription service. Many users also block companies that serve unwanted ads on Twitter, preventing future ads from the same company from being served to them. 

While Musk wants to delete Twitter/X’s block feature, this planned change is an unpopular one. For starters, many high profile Twitter users rely on the app’s block feature to avoid harassment or spam. Twitter/X’s block feature is useful for moderation, and removing this feature has the potential to place Twitter/X in violation of the policies of both the Google Play Store, and the Apple App Store, as both require some form of blocking feature. 

For the Google Play Store, users must have “an in-app system for blocking [user-generated content] and users,” and on the Apple App Store developers must give users “the ability to block abusive users from the service.” Removing X’s block feature will place the app in violation of these rules, and could potentially force Google and Apple to remove X from their app stores.

Musk plans to delete Twitter/X's block feature despite risks

By removing X’s block feature, Musk could comply with app store rules by enabling an improved form of X’s mute function. Muted users can still see the posts of the users who mute them and make unwanted replies, but their posts will not be seen by the person who muted them.

While Musk has confirmed that he plans to remove the block feature from X, he has not stated when the feature will be removed from the app, or how X will work around the guidelines of the Google Play Store and Apple App Store. As such, we do not expect the removal of Twitter’s block feature to be immanent. 

You can join the discussion on Musk’s plan to remove Twitter’s block feature on the OC3D Forums.