Twitter is a Private Company

Smedley said:

How does that compromise the neutrality of the platform? You don't have to listen to him. I didn't, and I still have a Twitter account in good standing today.

what do you make of this?


Well, the guy openly criticizes Musk on Musk’s own platform with no repercussions. He’s free to unfollow Musk, and he’s free to not follow or even block any of the suggested follows. He’s also free to follow AOC or any other progressive, which presumably would result in new and different suggested follows.

So, to your question, with regard to what that tweet says about Twitter’s political neutrality, I make very little of it. 

What do you make of it?


Smedley said:

Well, the guy openly criticizes Musk on Musk’s own platform with no repercussions. He’s free to unfollow Musk, and he’s free to not follow or even block any of the suggested follows. He’s also free to follow AOC or any other progressive, which presumably would result in new and different suggested follows.

So, to your question, with regard to what that tweet says about Twitter’s political neutrality, I make very little of it. 

What do you make of it?

We're free to not watch Fox News, but that has nothing to do with whether Fox News is "politically neutral" or not.


It's the absurdity of Musk even making the claim that the platform ever could be "neutral." The choice to moderate content will inevitably lead to some sort of bias. As will a choice NOT to moderate content. 



nohero said:

Smedley said:

Well, the guy openly criticizes Musk on Musk’s own platform with no repercussions. He’s free to unfollow Musk, and he’s free to not follow or even block any of the suggested follows. He’s also free to follow AOC or any other progressive, which presumably would result in new and different suggested follows.

So, to your question, with regard to what that tweet says about Twitter’s political neutrality, I make very little of it. 

What do you make of it?

We're free to not watch Fox News, but that has nothing to do with whether Fox News is "politically neutral" or not.

so do you believe that because musk offers political commentary on Twitter, that compromises the political neutrality of Twitter? 

its a simple question, you should be able to answer without obfuscation, deflection or deferring to proxies. 


ml1 said:

It's the absurdity of Musk even making the claim that the platform ever could be "neutral." The choice to moderate content will inevitably lead to some sort of bias. As will a choice NOT to moderate content. 

well then, no platform in this world can ever be neutral. So there's no point in anyone wringing their hands over Twitter's non-neutrality.


Smedley said:

so do you believe that because musk offers political commentary on Twitter, that compromises the political neutrality of Twitter? 

its a simple question, you should be able to answer without obfuscation, deflection or deferring to proxies. 

You don't sound as if you're interested in the content of any response.

I don't think I need to elaborate on what I wrote, which is not the same as your interpretations.


Smedley said:

Well, the guy openly criticizes Musk on Musk’s own platform with no repercussions. He’s free to unfollow Musk, and he’s free to not follow or even block any of the suggested follows. He’s also free to follow AOC or any other progressive, which presumably would result in new and different suggested follows.

So, to your question, with regard to what that tweet says about Twitter’s political neutrality, I make very little of it. 

What do you make of it?

I think that having the CEO of a social platform that apparently has such right-wing (and intellectually trashy) tastes does not bode well for neutrality of the platform.


Smedley said:

well then, no platform in this world can ever be neutral. So there's no point in anyone wringing their hands over Twitter's non-neutrality.

I can't speak for anyone else but I'm not wringing my hands over it. I don't care other than to take note of how silly a lot of Musk's pronouncements are. 


Gonna bump this again:

PVW said:

On the topic of free speech and content moderation on social media, I thought this was by the former Reddit CEO was a very interesting read (apart from the weird in-content ads for the author's tree-planting initiative)

https://threadreaderapp.com/thread/1586955288061452289.html

I found the distinction between moderating content and behavior an interesting point.


ml1 said:

Smedley said:

well then, no platform in this world can ever be neutral. So there's no point in anyone wringing their hands over Twitter's non-neutrality.

I can't speak for anyone else but I'm not wringing my hands over it. I don't care other than to take note of how silly a lot of Musk's pronouncements are. 

An owner of a business talking up his business in a way that might be promotional and not entirely accurate...well, I never. 


PVW said:

Gonna bump this again:

PVW said:

On the topic of free speech and content moderation on social media, I thought this was by the former Reddit CEO was a very interesting read (apart from the weird in-content ads for the author's tree-planting initiative)

https://threadreaderapp.com/thread/1586955288061452289.html

I found the distinction between moderating content and behavior an interesting point.

and in addition to content moderation, there are the algorithms that surface content for the users. And presumably these algorithms are approved by human beings for use on the platform. Twitter notifies me of posts that it thinks will interest me. And for some reason among the most common users it surfaces for me are Donald Trump Jr, Benny Johnson, Howie Rose, Ben Shapiro, Ted Cruz, my former boss and nohero. Why? I have no idea. Some of them I follow, but most I don't (e.g. DJT Jr.). Maybe at some point I replied to one of them. Or maybe someone I follow is really interested in one of them.  I don't know.

But my point is, anyone can see from that list that it's pretty biased politically. Why I get a lot of notifications about obnoxious right-wingers (and nearly all men) I have no idea. But I do.


Smedley said:

ml1 said:

Smedley said:

well then, no platform in this world can ever be neutral. So there's no point in anyone wringing their hands over Twitter's non-neutrality.

I can't speak for anyone else but I'm not wringing my hands over it. I don't care other than to take note of how silly a lot of Musk's pronouncements are. 

An owner of a business talking up his business in a way that might be promotional and not entirely accurate...well, I never. 

I don't know why you seem to think I'm riled up about this. I'm not. I just happen to notice that Musk is a pretty jerky guy. 


ml1 said:

PVW said:

Gonna bump this again:

PVW said:

On the topic of free speech and content moderation on social media, I thought this was by the former Reddit CEO was a very interesting read (apart from the weird in-content ads for the author's tree-planting initiative)

https://threadreaderapp.com/thread/1586955288061452289.html

I found the distinction between moderating content and behavior an interesting point.

and in addition to content moderation, there are the algorithms that surface content for the users. And presumably these algorithms are approved by human beings for use on the platform. Twitter notifies me of posts that it thinks will interest me. And for some reason among the most common users it surfaces for me are Donald Trump Jr, Benny Johnson, Howie Rose, Ben Shapiro, Ted Cruz, my former boss and nohero. Why? I have no idea. Some of them I follow, but most I don't (e.g. DJT Jr.). Maybe at some point I replied to one of them. Or maybe someone I follow is really interested in one of them.  I don't know.

But my point is, anyone can see from that list that it's pretty biased politically. Why I get a lot of notifications about obnoxious right-wingers (and nearly all men) I have no idea. But I do.

I hardly think this is evidence that Twitter is biased politically. I don't know what you tweet about or respond to or like but I'd guess there's a fair amount of political / progressive stuff. So you're just the kind of person who would love to tell DJT Jr to stuff it. And from a business perspective, Twitter wants active and engaged users - so it makes sense to suggest you follow people on the opposite end of the political spectrum. 

I don't know the internal mechanisms of Twitter's algo of course, but I think my read on it is much more plausible than Twitter being politically biased somehow, and implementing that bias by trying to indoctrinate / convert obstinate progressives to the other side via suggestions to follow Marjorie Taylor Greene or Tucker Carlson. That would be a pretty ridiculous strategy.   


Smedley said:

ml1 said:

PVW said:

Gonna bump this again:

PVW said:

On the topic of free speech and content moderation on social media, I thought this was by the former Reddit CEO was a very interesting read (apart from the weird in-content ads for the author's tree-planting initiative)

https://threadreaderapp.com/thread/1586955288061452289.html

I found the distinction between moderating content and behavior an interesting point.

and in addition to content moderation, there are the algorithms that surface content for the users. And presumably these algorithms are approved by human beings for use on the platform. Twitter notifies me of posts that it thinks will interest me. And for some reason among the most common users it surfaces for me are Donald Trump Jr, Benny Johnson, Howie Rose, Ben Shapiro, Ted Cruz, my former boss and nohero. Why? I have no idea. Some of them I follow, but most I don't (e.g. DJT Jr.). Maybe at some point I replied to one of them. Or maybe someone I follow is really interested in one of them.  I don't know.

But my point is, anyone can see from that list that it's pretty biased politically. Why I get a lot of notifications about obnoxious right-wingers (and nearly all men) I have no idea. But I do.

I hardly think this is evidence that Twitter is biased politically. I don't know what you tweet about or respond to or like but I'd guess there's a fair amount of political / progressive stuff. So you're just the kind of person who would love to tell DJT Jr to stuff it. And from a business perspective, Twitter wants active and engaged users - so it makes sense to suggest you follow people on the opposite end of the political spectrum. 

I don't know the internal mechanisms of Twitter's algo of course, but I think my read on it is much more plausible than Twitter being politically biased somehow, and implementing that bias by trying to indoctrinate / convert obstinate progressives to the other side via suggestions to follow Marjorie Taylor Greene or Tucker Carlson. That would be a pretty ridiculous strategy.   

I didn't post it as evidence of political bias on Twitter. I posted it as evidence that they have opaque algorithms that surface content. It's evidence that the notion of a platform completely free of human bias is likely a fantasy, despite Elon's stated desire to create one.

and fwiw, I don't post much of anything on Twitter, and respond only rarely to anything. When I do, it's usually about baseball (which is why the Howie Rose alerts actually make sense).


Ok. When you said "anyone can see from that list that it's pretty biased politically," I thought you were pretty clearly saying that was evidence of political bias on Twitter. Mea culpa if I misunderstood. 


Smedley said:

Ok. When you said "anyone can see from that list that it's pretty biased politically," I thought you were pretty clearly saying that was evidence of political bias on Twitter. Mea culpa if I misunderstood. 

I wrote that the list is politically biased. Not that it's evidence Twitter is politically biased or that its algorithms are. The list is also baseball biased fwiw.


Ok. But the list doesn't exist in a vacuum. The list is a product of Twitter and its algos. So it's weird to say the list is politically biased, but that doesn't mean twitter and its algos are biased.

Like saying oh wow these menu prices are expensive (but I'm not saying the restaurant is expensive).  


On the other hand ml1, it appears perhaps that Trump did build that wall - a thick one at that - and you're talking to it.


Smedley said:

Ok. But the list doesn't exist in a vacuum. The list is a product of Twitter and its algos. So it's weird to say the list is politically biased, but that doesn't mean twitter and its algos are biased.

Like saying oh wow these menu prices are expensive (but I'm not saying the restaurant is expensive).  

holy cow this is going on and on. 

I didn't say the algorithms aren't biased. I don't believe there's any evidence that they are POLITICALLY biased.  The outcome may be politically biased, but that doesn't mean the humans who wrote the code to produce it did so with a political agenda. Which gets back to my original point -- the idea that someone can create a platform that has humans administering it and have it be free of bias is almost certainly a fantasy.

sheesh.


The algorithm pre-existed Elon and picked up on his tweet about supporting Republicans.  Don't blame the computer overlords.


Maybe Elon is self sabotaging Twitter to save the world from it? 


Twitter goes down, SpaceX goes up, Tesla goes left, right, straight and reverse.


$44bn is a lot of money to troll the world, but maybe that's all it's about.


November has been quite a month for libertarians thus far.  First Crypto implodes and now Bruh King Musk appears to have turned Twitter into his own private viking funeral.


Is Twitter even still a company at this point?


I can't even keep track anymore. It seems like everyday something stupider happens.


It's hard to believe this stuff is true. Read the thread.


Given the fact that almost the entire security staff has resigned, you have to figure that hackers are just having a field day exploring Twitter's virtual viscera.


It’s much easier to build an electric car than to run a social network…


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