In an unprecedented move, social media giant Twitter has prohibited misgendering and deadnaming trans individuals on their site. This was made when the site updated their hateful conduct policy to include these actions in their harassment and abuse section in late October.
This came after groups on the site targeted transgender individuals as a form of harassment or abuse. The groups would either call trans individuals by their pre-transition names or refused to acknowledge their change in pronouns.
“Targeting someone because of their gender identity has always been a violation of our Hateful Conduct policy. We updated our Terms of Service earlier this year with more specifics on this type of speech to ensure our rules and how we enforce them are clear to everyone,” Twitter said in an interview with The Verge.
Twitter has also taken a stronger stance against threats of violence and uses of hateful imagery toward groups of people. These are just some of the many changes Twitter has made this year to try to form a more inclusive space for users.
In fact, Twitter has already taken a stand against bot accounts by eliminating more than 70 million suspicious accounts since May.
But Twitter isn’t the only site that has resolved to take a more progressive stance on gender.
Powerhouse Google has recently changed the Smart Composure feature on Gmail to prevent the use of gendered pronouns in emails.
This feature predicts what a Gmail user might type in order to save time and energy based on what you’ve previously typed in the email. For example, if a user types “I’ll see,” the feature might suggest “you later ” to complete the phrase, “I’ll see you later.”
But instead of suggesting pronouns in its predictive text, Google has chosen to avoid gendering pronouns altogether in order to prevent issues of misidentification for its 1.5 billion users worldwide.
“Google’s technology will not suggest gender-based pronouns because the risk is too high that its ‘Smart Compose’ technology might predict someone’s sex or gender identity incorrectly and offend users,” reports Google product leaders.
The feature utilizes a predictive AI to construct these sentences, but there’s always the possibility for error. By eliminating pronouns in its complex software, it allows for a more inclusive user experience on cloud devices.
And countless people use cloud devices. It’s estimated that the power density in one data center is more than 100 times stronger than a commercial office building. Should businesses fail to incorporate practices like these, a company could go under.
In fact, LinkedIn has been setting this precedent for over a year. By avoiding misgendering pronouns, the company has succeeded in avoiding missteps that may create a lack of confidence among users.
And this isn’t a new way of thinking. As more celebrities and fashion lines come out with gender-neutral, non-binary looks, inclusivity has spread far beyond the use of our smartphones.
The hashtag #GenderNeutral has been used more than 380,000 times on Instagram alone. More mothers are raising children in a gender-neutral way. Countless individuals are blurring the gender lines in fashion that young Millennials and members of Gen Z crave.
According to GQ, younger people simply believe that gender binaries are outdated. In response, the fashion industry has become more accommodating. For example, Gucci retained its spot as the most popular brand in the world thanks to its new line of non-binary clothing. The U.S. fashion market is supposed to grow to $385 billion by 2025, but businesses throughout every industry may struggle if they don’t adapt with the times.