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Twitter Bids Farewell to the Default Profile Photo Egg

Digital Communicator
March 31, 2017

The egg has cracked. Twitter just recently announced that it is changing its default photo profile image from the iconic egg.

A more generic image

A more generic image
The new image.

The new image.

The company offered three major reasons for the change, but the final one was easily the most interesting:

We’ve noticed patterns of behavior with accounts that are created only to harass others – often they don’t take the time to personalize their accounts. This has created an association between the default egg profile photo and negative behavior, which isn’t fair to people who are still new to Twitter and haven’t yet personalized their profile photo.

The egg has become synonymous with the growing problem of trolls and other hate speech on the platform.

As you can see, the new default photo profile image is much more generic:

Regardless, people have come to associate the circle head with masculinity, and because of this association, we felt that it was important to explore alternate head shapes. We reviewed many variations of our figure, altering both the head and shoulders to feel more inclusive to all genders. When the shoulders were wider, the image felt overly masculine, so we decreased the width of the shoulders and adjusted the height of the figure. As a result of these iterations, we ended with a more gender-balanced figure. We chose grays because they feel temporary, generic, and universal. With that, we included a higher contrast color combination to make this image accessible for those with visual impairments. Because of its coloring, the new profile photo also gives less prominence to accounts with a default profile photo.

After the well-publicized influx of hate speech on the platform, Twitter has taken the problem head on unveiling a number of safety feature including advanced filters, a safe search feature, and more.

If you’re interested, take a look at our roundup of some of the best apps for service.

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