Stories
Slash Boxes
Comments

SoylentNews is people

Politics
posted by martyb on Tuesday May 23 2017, @12:22PM   Printer-friendly
from the closing-the-barn-door dept.

If anyone knows how important Twitter is to Donald Trump, it's the president.

“Without the tweets, I wouldn't be here,” he told the Financial Times last month.

To which Twitter's co-founder says: Sorry about that, world.

Evan Williams, who still sits on the company's board of directors, recently told The New York Times that he wants to repair the damage he thinks Twitter and the broader Internet have wrought on society in the form of trolls, cyberbullies, live-streamed violence, fake news and — yes — Trump.

“I thought once everybody could speak freely and exchange information and ideas, the world is automatically going to be a better place,” Williams told the Times. “I was wrong about that.”

“If it’s true that he wouldn’t be president if it weren’t for Twitter, then yeah, I’m sorry,” he said.

Is Twitter responsible?


Original Submission

 
This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.
Display Options Threshold/Breakthrough Mark All as Read Mark All as Unread
The Fine Print: The following comments are owned by whoever posted them. We are not responsible for them in any way.
  • (Score: 5, Interesting) by c0lo on Tuesday May 23 2017, @12:46PM (7 children)

    by c0lo (156) on Tuesday May 23 2017, @12:46PM (#514176) Journal

    I thought once everybody could speak freely and exchange information and ideas,

    One can hardly call "information and ideas" something limited to 140 characters - yes, a tweet is an expression of something, but that something is rarely worthy of an expression. If you think this isn't remotely true, you deserve being governed by Trump - your thinking horizon is closer to a geometrical point.
    (do you remember that "For every complex problem there is an answer that is clear, simple, and wrong." saying? Actually, it's incomplete: there isn't just one, there are zillions of such simple answers)

    “If it’s true that he wouldn’t be president if it weren’t for Twitter, then yeah, I’m sorry,” he said.

    Hammers have been used for centuries for a whole range of purposes. I can't remember any blacksmith apologizing for making a tool that was used for bad;

    “I thought once everybody could speak freely and exchange information and ideas, the world is automatically going to be a better place,

    Aside of "tweet == exchange information and ideas", the Internet has made the word a better place. In spite of it being "for porn" and for distribution of ads and a way for TLA spying on people.
    The "exchange information and ideas" is a good thing™ - one needs to look no further than S/N (grin) - just that thunking of tweeting as a mean to carry this exchange is, as any delusion, bad.

    --
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aoFiw2jMy-0
    Starting Score:    1  point
    Moderation   +3  
       Insightful=1, Interesting=2, Total=3
    Extra 'Interesting' Modifier   0  
    Karma-Bonus Modifier   +1  

    Total Score:   5  
  • (Score: 1, Funny) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday May 23 2017, @01:40PM (2 children)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday May 23 2017, @01:40PM (#514227)

    Twitter is going to be replaced by Hollerith which is limited to 80 characters.

    • (Score: 2) by c0lo on Tuesday May 23 2017, @02:11PM

      by c0lo (156) on Tuesday May 23 2017, @02:11PM (#514249) Journal

      Mmm... you mean IBM cards - I might have a stack of them somewhere.

      Otherwise, the original Hollerith cards [wikipedia.org] weren't actually standardized and the number of rows/columns was application specific.

      --
      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aoFiw2jMy-0
    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday May 23 2017, @05:48PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday May 23 2017, @05:48PM (#514419)

      Hopefully also in ALL CAPS ONLY. Would read.

  • (Score: 3, Insightful) by Hyperturtle on Tuesday May 23 2017, @03:38PM (2 children)

    by Hyperturtle (2824) on Tuesday May 23 2017, @03:38PM (#514308)

    Interesting in that you chose a hammer as your example. Hammers cannot be applied to all things, as the arguments often end up being more complicated than how simple a nail is.

    Considering the hammer and any blacksmith's remorse or regrets for the application of hammers, I have read that the Nobel Peace Prize was selected as one of the prizes by Nobel, due to his misgivings about various inventions of his being used for warfare--as well as for productivity. It appears that he had his doubts about some of his inventions.

    Publically, he said no such thing--but did create the Peace Prize as one of the categories for reward. There has been no real reason provided as to why that category had been created amongst the others; the fact that his hammers had been used for things other than the common good may very well have been the motivating factors.

    It is not ill-conceived to believe that someone thought high-mindedly about their inventions or ideas, only to find what happens when people with somewhat different scruples come into contact with the idea and repurpose it for their own benefit. The inventor might have wished to have perhaps done things differently, if they only could.

    Regret is not a bad thing, but sometimes regret is misplaced. I think the real issue here is that not all people are the same and it is not realistic to expect that everyone will behave as a high-minded academic. Maybe if it wasn't for free, he'd have attracted only people that had something worth paying to read.

    However, it initially was created as a means to defeat SMS text messaging fees (or so I recall anyway--that was the rationalization at the time that I remember people saying), and so charging for it was out of the question. I am not sure why it was opened up for public access to read whatever wasn't marked private, but I guess the sharing economy has its drawbacks, especially since Twitter has not really found a way to be profitable from their mistakes.

    • (Score: 2) by Joe Desertrat on Tuesday May 23 2017, @09:08PM

      by Joe Desertrat (2454) on Tuesday May 23 2017, @09:08PM (#514522)

      Hammers cannot be applied to all things, as the arguments often end up being more complicated than how simple a nail is.

      It can be used for all repairs. One can take you very quickly from "this doesn't work and I don't know why" to "this doesn't work and we need a new one".

    • (Score: 2) by c0lo on Wednesday May 24 2017, @11:56AM

      by c0lo (156) on Wednesday May 24 2017, @11:56AM (#514755) Journal

      the fact that his hammers had been used for things other than the common good may very well have been the motivating factors.

      I oscillate quite a long time between Touche and Insightful.
      Thanks for giving me the reason for doing so.

      --
      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aoFiw2jMy-0
  • (Score: 2) by FatPhil on Wednesday May 24 2017, @01:49PM

    by FatPhil (863) <pc-soylentNO@SPAMasdf.fi> on Wednesday May 24 2017, @01:49PM (#514804) Homepage
    > One can hardly call "information and ideas" something limited to 140 characters

    "Do unto others as you would have done unto you."

    "Every action has an equal and opposite reaction."

    "The King is dead. Long live the Queen."

    "My fellow Americans, I'm pleased to tell you today that I signed legislation that will outlaw Russia forever. We begin bombing in 5 minutes"

    Many insightful and informative things can be expressed in 140 characters or even way fewer.
    --
    Great minds discuss ideas; average minds discuss events; small minds discuss people; the smallest discuss themselves