Watching Twitter’s self destruction
And enjoying it (frankly, I’ve never been a fan of Twitter).
First and foremost I want to make it clear that Twitter’s decision to shadow ban and outright ban certain users has absolutely nothing to do with the right to free speech. It’s a private company and they can ban and shadow ban anyone they want too. Of course, being a private company and depending on “customers” they can screw the pooch anytime they want to as well, and that’s what they are in the middle of doing.
I say, “more power too them”. They have to compete in a market with alternatives, unlike government, and they have to suffer the consequences of their decisions … also, for the most part, unlike government.
So, yeah, they’re not allowing certain conservative users to post on Twitter anymore.
Cool. It’s not like Twitter didn’t have enough problems before this decision to monitor and ban users for arbitrary and biased reasons. They were already under pressure to find a way to stop the declining numbers of users.
And their reaction? Well, let’s put a “Trust and Safety Council” together to monitor what users say. Oh, and let’s put a harpy from the extreme left wing of the political spectrum in charge and let her decide who can and can’t say “controversial things”.
How Orwellian can one get? Well, the degree is still up for debate, but the hypocrisy isn’t. Here’s Biz Stone, a Twitter co-founder in 2011:
[F]reedom of expression is essential. Some Tweets may facilitate positive change in a repressed country, some make us laugh, some make us think, some downright anger a vast majority of users. We don’t always agree with the things people choose to tweet, but we keep the information flowing irrespective of any view we may have about the content.
Except for now, when Twitter has decided that its “view” (or at least that of the “Truth and Safety Council”) is more important than the content.
Well done, Twitter. You deserve everything you are now suffering. It was all brought about by your policies and the decision that your customers weren’t the most important thing to your company.
That’s the beauty of markets. They will speak. And Twitter is presently being spoken too … harshly.