Wednesday, April 04, 2018

“Did We Create This Monster?” How Twitter Turned Toxic (Fast Company)

From an extensive Twitter reality check

"Twitter is not alone in wrestling with the fact that its product is being corrupted for malevolence: Facebook and Google have come under heightened scrutiny since the presidential election, as more information comes to light revealing how their platforms manipulate citizens, from Cambridge Analytica to conspiracy videos. The companies’ responses have been timid, reactive, or worse. “All of them are guilty of waiting too long to address the current problem, and all of them have a long way to go,” says Jonathon Morgan, founder of Data for Democracy, a team of technologists and data experts who tackle governmental social-impact projects.

The stakes are particularly high for Twitter, given that enabling breaking news and global discourse is key to both its user appeal and business model. Its challenges, increasingly, are the world’s.

How did Twitter get into this mess? Why is it only now addressing the malfeasance that has dogged the platform for years? “Safety got away from Twitter,” says a former VP at the company. “It was Pandora’s box. Once it’s opened, how do you put it all back in again?”"
“Did We Create This Monster?” How Twitter Turned Toxic

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