X, formerly Twitter, is changing how the block button works

Elon Musk has long been vocal about his dislike for social media block features, and now X (formerly Twitter) is showing signs of implementing his vision. In a move that’s sure to spark some discussion, X is changing how blocks function, beginning with the visibility of replies in the context of a block. While this is not a total removal, which is most certainly Musk’s stated preference, it’s a clear shift in the platform’s approach.A post from the X engineering team confirms this, citing a desire to align the feature with X’s view of itself as a “public town square”. This echoes Musk’s past comments blasting blocks as illogical in a public forum, as he once famously stated: “block is going to be deleted as a β€˜feature,’ except for DMs.”

So what’s changed? Before, if someone blocked you, you could still reply to their posts, and they wouldn’t see it. Now, you will be able to view direct replies from those that have blocked you. This potentially lessens the strength of the block tool as a way to shield oneself from online negativity.X insists its goal is user control aligned with public visibility of posts, and I’m sure reactions will be mixed, with some welcoming the added transparency, and others seeing it as a degradation of a vital safety measure.

This new rule is the latest in Musk’s reshaping of X. His controversial decisions have ranged from mass layoffs to policy U-turns to the reinstatement of previously banned figures. It certainly looks to some like this is just the first move in making the block button disappear entirely, but we will have to wait and see what happens next and whether this newest change sparks enough controversy to warrant a reversal.

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