Elon Musk’s Layoffs Weaken Twitter’s Child Abuse Team

CEO Elon Musk has severely decreased the Twitter staff dedicated to fighting child sexual exploitation. He reportedly slashed the worldwide workforce in half and left behind an overworked skeleton group.


The unit has fewer than ten professionals to assess and elevate child sexual exploitation claims, according to the three individuals familiar with the subject, as reported by Bloomberg. At the start of the year, Twitter had 20 workers.

Sources claimed that the team of former law enforcement officials and child safety specialists in the US, Ireland, and Singapore was working long hours before the reduction. 

It restricts the spread of child sexual abuse content, internet grooming, and media that promote minors’ attraction to sexual orientation or identity.

Some major child sexual exploitation hashtags have been deleted since Musk took charge, sources indicated. Still, they warned that deleting tweets containing offensive hashtags is not always enough to counteract this sort of propaganda. 

Apparently, offenders modify terminology to avoid discovery.


AI-based technologies may be valuable for detecting images that have already been evaluated and designated child sexual exploitation material by law enforcement.

Yet, human assessment is vital for understanding the intricacies of grooming and other exploitative activities, discovering previously undiscovered abusive images and videos, and comprehending regional disparities in the law. 

Besides, these people are also compelled to react to law enforcement demands in criminal investigations.

Losing professionals in Europe and Singapore would also make monitoring non-English markets difficult, said Bloomberg’s sources.

These professionals worked with product managers and engineers to design tools and algorithms that block the spread of the content. Third-party contractors helped triage user-reported postings. 

About two weeks ago, Tech Times reported that Musk asked Twitter staff to commit to an “extremely hardcore” ethic or lose their jobs. Reportedly, the crew was devastated by the news. 

Musk did not establish a team-friendly climate, insiders said.

As per Bloomberg, the firm has also lost several staff who ban foreign misinformation efforts on the site. In Asia-Pacific, just one contractor assigned to fight spam in Korea remained.

Previous reports indicate that Twitter has eliminated many content moderators. Facebook, TikTok, and Twitter utilize third-party moderators to filter through reported material.

Unlike other sorts of offensive content that violate Twitter’s rules, child sexual abuse material is unlawful and must be removed and reported within strict time constraints.

Read More: Twitter Salaries for UK, Germany Employees Are Delayed: But Why?

In the UK

Notably, EU and UK politicians are contemplating internet safety measures that would oblige social media sites to safeguard youngsters or face penalties. 

In the UK, the Online Safety Bill provides authorities the right to fine Twitter and other social media platforms 10% of their income if they fail to monitor their networks adequately.

EU regulations would oblige tech firms to identify sexual abuse content more aggressively.

The European Commission’s proposal would allow judges to order corporations to examine end-to-end encrypted communications. The commission wants companies to employ AI to identify grooming and age verification to discover minors.

Read More: Elon Musk: Apple’ Threatened to Withhold Twitter’ From App Store

Written by Tech Times writer Trisha Kae Andrada

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