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Among select users in markets around the world, the changes resulted in a 4% drop in abuse reports from search and 8% fewer abuse reports from conversations, according to Twitter.

In order to identify the behavior, the company has picked out certain patterns of behavior which it associates with troll-like accounts. In doing so, Twitter thinks it can proactively police its site without waiting for people to run into and report abuse. The content itself will remain on Twitter but will only be shown if people click on "show more replies" or choose to see everything in their searches. Examples cited include whether or not a person has confirmed their e-mail address, if someone signs up for multiple accounts at the same time, behavior that could indicate a coordinated attack or accounts that repeatedly tweet or mention accounts that don't follow them.

These signals will now be considered in how we organize and present content in communal areas like conversation and search.

Del Harvey, Twitter's vice-president of trust and safety, said that the new changes were based on research that found that most of the abuse reports on Twitter originate in search results or the conversations that take place in the responses to a single tweet.

Twitter says that initial trials have shows that using this method has resulted in an 8pc fall in the number of abuse cases reported to it.

Twitter says it is taking action against "trolls" that "distort and detract from the public conversation", by making their tweets less visible.

Still, Twitter's discourse is often colored by such tweets, and banning the people involved seems like a good way to open the platform to cries of censorship (well, more open than it is already).

This is to improve the health of the conversation and improve everyone's Twitter experience.

It said it had deleted or added warnings to about 29 million posts that had broken its rules on hate speech, graphic violence, terrorism and sex, during the first three months of the year.

When asked whether Twitter users will be able to appeal their tweets' demotion, a spokeswoman said Tuesday that the system is still being rolled out and that the company is thinking about an appeals process. Twitter also admitted that this is just one of several approaches meant to improve people's experiences on the platform, and that there will be "mistakes", "false positives", and "things we miss". You're not going to want to see unrelated tweets or users trying to promote their new SoundCloud mix by latching onto the trending topic.