TWEETSTORM is an occasional feature on decentralize.today where we share threads , mostly from Twitter, that we think deserve a wider audience, some are informative, some educational, some amusing and others yet are controversial...we dig these out for you so you don't have to!
Today, we feature a thread on the hot topic of the time, the future of Twitter, and we will follow up with two further tweetstorms later in the week. Where does DT stand on the debate...ask again on Saturday (part 3).
Anyway, my tuppence worth on Musk and Twitter.
He’s in for a rocky ride, and the question for me is whether his ego is going to make him destroy Twitter.
Right now, what’s pretty clear is that he doesn’t understand what makes Twitter work. 1/10
There are three things he doesn’t seem to grasp.
Firstly, he seems to think he’s bought a tech company (‘not enough coders, too many managers’) when what he’s really bought is a community of users. 2/10
What makes Twitter work, what makes it potentially valuable, isn’t the tech (which isn’t that special) but the community that uses it - that, in particular, it’s become the medium of choice of journalists and politicians. 3/10
That’s the value, right there.
Every journalist worth their salt uses Twitter - and most use it a lot.
Ditto pretty much every politician.
They’re the user base he should care about, not the right-wing-nut-job community.
But he doesn’t even understand *them* 4/10
Right-wing-nut-jobs don’t just want a place where they can rant, abuse and say whatever words they want.
If they did, they’d be quite content with Gab, Parler, Truth Social, some bits of 4Chan, Reddit etc.
See, they’ve got plenty of spaces. 5/10
No, what they want is a place where they can rant *at the libs*, at the MSM, at the people they hate.
If those people aren’t there (and they aren’t on Gab, Parler, Truth Social etc), the ranting isn’t nearly as fun.
So if Musk manages to drive the libs away, that’s ruined. 6/10
If the libs are driven off, the right-wing will be jubilant for a while, but then bored.
And then Twitter dies.
So Musk has to keep the libs on board.
Oh, and the advertisers too, because they’ll run like hell if Twitter’s just a hate-speech hell-site. 7/10
And that means moderation.
It means keeping the Nazis off the site.
It means keeping control of abuse and hate speech.
It means cutting down the misinformation.
All things Musk doesn’t want to do.
If he turns Twitter into a hell-site, he kills it. 8/10
So what can he do? It’s not easy.
There’s no simple solution, no magic wand.
Free speech is bloody difficult.
I’d suggest he read Habermas, but of course he won’t.
So it’ll be messy, and I suspect he’ll just get bored eventually, but who knows? 9/10
That’s the thing. Handing over Twitter to a massive-ego, massive-wealth, unpredictable billionaire is kind of a metaphor for the whole way we’ve dealt with the internet.
It’s a mess.
We just have to do what we can. 10/10
P.S. I realise I didn’t say what the three things are.
1) That it’s the community that matters, not the tech
2) Where the value is in that community
3) What the right-wing-nut-jobs want.