Twitter to drop 'Egg' avatar due to its association with online harassment

Twitter

Twitter will be getting rid of its default profile image of the egg.

"For the past seven years, everyone who has created an account on Twitter starts out with their default profile photo as an egg", the statement said.

But the company also notes the egg has become associated with "negative behavior" from trolls who create accounts simply to harass other users.

For example, once the company landed on a faceless head, it wanted to make sure that the figure didn't seem gender-specific. Twitter aimed to create something that was generic, universal, serious, unbranded, temporary, and inclusive, and which felt more like a placeholder than the egg.

Twitter's egg avatar, often a symbol of anonymous online harassment on the social media service, is no more.

Twitter is to drop its 'Egg' avatar due to its associations with online harassment.

It also comes in a darker shade accompanying a a figure with a thicker head and body for those who are visually impaired.


Twitter eggs have finally hatched, and from their shells have emerged amorphous human blobs.

Refreshing their brand and changing the default profile photo to help prompt more self-expression.

"These regular users would be using a troll's clothing in some ways, not realizing that they probably should be changing that", Twitter's senior manager of product design Bryan Haggerty told Fast Company.

In its announcement, Twitter talks about how it set out to design the egg's replacement, a figure with a round floating head (it looks a bit like these floating bonsai trees).

Twitter shares a couple other reasons for the switch, and then goes into detail about the process of deciding on which humanoid silhouette blob shape most accurately represents Twitter. When people identify their Twitter handles outside of Twitter, they precede it with a @.

While acknowledging that some users kept the egg because they thought it was fun and cute, Twitter said its anonymity had a darker side.

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