This is not a good situation. The thing is, I don’t think there are likely any platforms that have the tools they would need to fix the problem by removing it. Resolution through referral is something that takes a lot of effort, especially if you want to have an appeal process, which you should consider a human right in some ways.
What is the alternative?
Well, you should never have just one approach to solving a problem, right? You want to have labels as well as the ability to remove certain types of content. You want to have a structured, principled approach to how you prioritize types of misinformation, what types you remove or don’t remove. And you want to communicate that to people so they hopefully understand.
Education is really important. But here’s the challenge: Education is most impactful when it’s delivered at the time you need information. You should immediately see a label like: “It has been determined to be potentially AI. We have this level of confidence that this is generated content. There are all kinds of things that could be explored.
Think about how unified the tech industry was around child sexual exploitation. That was the first thing that got all the different tech companies talking to each other, and then it was terrorism and then suicide, which of course aren’t big topics of conversation to begin with. And these were the first because they were very clearly problematic. And this AI-generated misinformation is another thing that is clearly problematic. I can almost guarantee you that tech companies are actually designed to pass information to each other about the different disinformation campaigns that hit the platform at different times.
Do you miss Twitter?
I miss a lot of people. We had very high hopes. We had some really good plans that we were really starting to move towards, major changes that we were trying to make. And I will probably always be a little disappointed that I never got to see them come to fruition or even begin to come to fruition.
Twitter, in name, is dead, but do you think Twitter, the platform, is dead?
I will need more data before I can make this call. Anecdotally, there were certainly a lot fewer tweets. And died in what way? There’s a very active right-wing Nazi group, very active groups there. I think he’s dead in some ways for some things. And then for others, it’s exactly what they want.
Do you think there will ever be another Twitter?
I don’t know if this will be very likely. It really was like lightning in a bottle in many ways. Even after that, even with it’s cool. RIGHT? Rad. Come on people! But it’s fragmented.
In its glory days, Twitter was like the Tower of Babel before it fell.
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