Twitter Halts Plan To Purge Inactive Accounts Amid Concern Over Deceased Users

The social media giant is pausing the process until it finds a way to memorialize the accounts of users who have died.

Twitter announced Wednesday that it will pause its plan to purge inactive accounts amid fears that deceased users would have their pages erased.

In a statement, the social media giant noted that the initiative only affects the European Union for now, and clarified that it “always had an inactive account policy but we haven’t enforced it consistently.”

“We’ve heard you on the impact that this would have on the accounts of the deceased,” the company added. “This was a miss on our part. We will not be removing any inactive accounts until we create a new way for people to memorialize accounts.”

Twitter then apologized to users “for the confusion and concerns” it caused and vowed to keep the public updated.

The delay comes just a day after The Verge reported that Twitter had been warning people with inactive accounts that their accounts would be deleted to free up user names unless they logged in by Dec. 11. The move applies to accounts that have been dormant for six months or more, and would not force users to tweet anything ― only to sign in to show they’re active.

“As part of our commitment to serve the public conversation, we’re working to clean up inactive accounts to present more accurate, credible information people can trust across Twitter,” a company spokesperson told The Verge. “Part of this effort is encouraging people to actively log-in and use Twitter when they register an account, as stated in our inactive accounts policy.”

It remains unclear how many accounts may be affected.

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