Twitter markets itself as a news application on the apple store. Perhaps Apple and Tim Cooke need a fake news and propaganda category?
According to Sensor Tower, Twitter is number one in the news category and 24th overall on the apple store.
According to Vivian Schiller Vivian Schiller former head of news and journalism partnerships at Twitter and also the former CEO of NPR,
SCHILLER: Let me just say I think it would be a mistake for social media companies to try to, on their own, determine or deign what is a fake news story and what isn’t and shut it off, or what’s a good news organization or a bad news organization. That’s a very, very slippery slope.
The problem is there is very little transparency and consistency when it comes to what accounts Twitter is suspending and which they are not. As long as there is an even playing field for all and the rules are clearly understood, that would be a good thing. We are not there yet. There’s more to do.
Twitter is hamstrung by privacy laws and regulations that prevent them from showing (in most cases, absent compelling public interest on the specific topic, ie news) exactly why users are suspended.
It would go a long way towards clarifying matters if twitter would, in coordination with the suspended parties release the tweets that earned the suspensions of Milo Yiannopoulis, Mike Ma, Ricky Vaughn, Pax Dickinson, Richard Spencer, Chuck Johnson, John Rivers (and others) and lead a public discussion about what behavior is acceptable and so the public can determine if Twitter got it right.
With market competitor Gab.ai growing at a massive rate, Twitter’s confusing the issue is CEO Andrew Torba’s gain.
Andrew Torba states,
Daily Reminder: all are welcome here
Gab is for everyone.
We are the defenders of free speech.
We are The People
The alt right and others find a free speech platform that doesn’t suspend accounts and has muting tools in place.
Obviously twitter, as a publicly traded company is being buffeted by the controversy generated by Vijaya Gadde when she blatantly publicized and politicized the abuse scandal at twitter in her WAPO editorial of April 16, 2015.
A major problem for Twitter is that they do not enforce their own rules consistently.
But others, like those from the tweeters that suggested I needed to “go” and that it was “op time,” seemed like clear violations: they encouraged others to target me, repeatedly tweeted at and about me and made references to violence.
And yet threats and fake content are still omnipresent on twitter.
For instance you can solicit hitmen:
Declare our now elected President as a “common enemy” of CIA?
You can pretend Donald Trump has been sworn in and is President already.
A founder of Twitter, and Twitter Board Member (and twitter’s largest individual shareholder) Ev Williams called out Facebook for their “fake news” problem in a Medium post (Ev is CEO/Founder) that has made news.
I found it interesting that when I went to read Zuckerberg’s post about misinformation, there were two ads on the side that are super fake.
One wonders why Evan Williams is not more outspoken about the fake news and abuse that proliferates on twitter?
Twitter does have rules preventing abuse and fake news on the books, they just don’t enforce them. And what they do enforce, seems to be one sides in the political spectrum.
It is at the point that Twitter’s core business is suffering as reflected in the stock price which is below IPO.
At the very least, Jack Dorsey and the Board of Directors owe it to shareholders to clarify what is going on, and what steps are being taken to cure the public perception of Twitter as a safe haven for abusers & fake #news.