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New ‘Trust and Safety Council’ Is Twitter Version of 1984’s Ministry of Truth

Twitter says it wants to strike a balance between free speech and harassment. It didn't.

FemFreqFeminist Frequency / YoutubeIn order for users to feel confident expressing themselves “freely and safely,” Twitter is debuting a new advisory group dubbed the “Trust & Safety Council.” But a quick glance at its membership roster suggests the council is almost as Orwellian as it sounds—and overwhelmingly biased in favor of speech suppression.

If you thought Milo Yiannopoulos losing his blue checkmark was the opening salvo in the next great culture war (I tended to agree with Popehat’s Ken White that the controversy was overblown), then this might be your virtual invasion of Poland.

The council includes more than 40 organizations that will be tasked with helping Twitter, “strike the right balance between fighting abuse and speaking truth to power.” But if the goal was really to find some middle ground between total free speech and safeguards against harassment, one might have expect Twitter to solicit some diversity of opinion. In fact, despite the press release’s claim that the council includes a “diversity of voices,” virtually none of the council members are properly classified as free speech organizations. (Full list here).

Some of the groups—such as Hollaback! and the Dangerous Speech Project—don’t think harassment should be criminalized outright. But the vast majority are certainly more concerned about allowing too much speech rather than too little. Notable members include Feminist Frequency—the blog and Youtube channel of anti-Gamer Gate activist Anita Sarkeesian—the Anti-Defamation League, and a host of suicide-and-domestic-violence prevention groups.

I sent Twitter’s head of Global Policy Outreach a tweet asking why the council’s composition is so one-sided (this seems like the best way to reach her, yes?). I did not immediately hear back.

Twitter is a private company. It is free to make whatever speech rules it wants. Forcing Twitter to permit more kinds of speech would not actually be pro-free speech—in fact, it would violate the First Amendment.

But its users are also free to complain that the platform is cracking down on speech they would like it to permit. For my part, I would feel more comfortable if the Trust & Safety Council included at least a few principled speech or tech freedom groups, like the Foundation for Individual Rights and the Electronic Frontier Foundation.

I hope I don’t get banned for saying that.

Photo Credit: Youtube

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  • albo||

    Twitter is an internet company. They aren't eternal. Piss enough people off with your bad services, people find an alternative and you're the new MySpace. When's the last time you Digged something?

  • The Last American Hero||

    ^This can't be said enough. Sounds like a great chance for a no-holds-barred Twitter knock off.

  • Chip Chipperson||

    I worry that we're at a point where these companies just have it so clocked that they really are eternal. I mean, Facebook should have vanished a long time ago. And yet it's still, somehow, it's still here and as powerful as ever.

    Enough people use Twitter that it probably isn't going anywhere. And the sad fact is that 'free speech' really isn't that important to a whole lot of people, especially not when it comes down to a social justice argument. And what's that, 50% of Twitter users?

    So let's say we invent a 'libertarian Twitter' where speech is totally unregulated. Even if 50% of Twitter migrates to that service (optimistic at best), I doubt it would cause Twitter reexamine it's policy, because the users who'd stay are progressives who WANT the protection of Big Brother, and would simply declare victory and cheer the departure of us neanderthals -- especially since the people who actually run the company are fully onboard with the progressive social justice agenda anyway. So now all we've done is further balkanized the internet; a bunch of libertarians talking only to themselves, and a bunch of progressives doing the same. And guess which platform is going to be the one with media 'credibility'? Hmm.

    Remember how Voat was supposed to cripple Reddit after they passed their new 'abuse' regulations? Yeah, how did that turn out for everyone?

  • Loki||

    So let's say we invent a 'libertarian Twitter' where speech is totally unregulated.

    The other thing to remember is that Twitter will immediately begin lobbying for regulations that will cripple their competition. Cronyism: the new "American way."

  • ant1sthenes||

    A libertarian twitter would be p2p and run through tor, so eh.

  • Marty .||

    Twister or Rstat claim to perform this function (not sure if they use Tor specifically)

  • CapitalistRoader||

    Twitter stock is down 78% from its two-year high. Twitter will either open up or die.

  • Chip Chipperson||

    I doubt you can tie that to any kind of move to tighten up speech restrictions.

    It has much more to do with the fact that Twitter has never actually figured out how to turn a profit.

    At some point all the people who have billions in VC tied up with them are going to want to see a return, but every attempt at monetizing the service has failed. Making the environment more PC and thus 'safer' for advertisers by eliminating the kinds of controversial (read: non-progressive) tweets that spark social justice mobs can only help with monetization.

    Now they can put a bullet point in their sales presentations talking about how they're creating a 'safer' environment for all users. And getting official buy-in from the leaders of the social justice cartel through this 'Trust & Safety Council' will help ensure that advertisers won't be embroiled in unwanted controversy. Basically it's a social-justice protection racket for corporations.

  • Quixote||

    The fundamental concern, of course, is how to put an end to fake "Mayor Jim Ardis" accounts, as well as dozens of accounts in the "names" of distinguished university presidents and other cultural figures around the country. I think there is hardly any disagreement, even in the so-called "First Amendment community" (a real joke for several reasons), that the trolls and thugs who post un-obvious "parodies" from such accounts need to be either blocked or incarcerated. We simply cannot have a society where people are allowed to use this brand of "humor" to twist words and stir up unwanted controversy on our college campuses. For a rather ample list of menacing "speech" of the sort, see this link and the associated website documenting one leading criminal "satire" case:

    http://raphaelgolbtrial.wordpr.....rsonation/

  • Intraveneous Woodchipper||

    "Die" is a community-regulated word. You just got Banhammered.

  • Long Woodchippers||

    I was on TheHill.com yesterday discussing SCOTUS' stay of the EPA coal plan. This morning I went back to look for any new comments and noticed quite a few had been deleted. I checked my Disqus profile to see that one of mine had been among those removed.

    A Lib made a comment about how this ruling was going to let people die (and that was deleted). I responded by asking, with the rise in energy costs of Obama necessarily bankrupts the coal industry, how many people would die of cold for no heat or from heart for no air conditioning. That was also deleted.

    I guess you just can't suggest people dying.

  • buybuydandavis||

    So let's say we invent a 'libertarian Twitter' where speech is totally unregulated.

    How about just an uncensored Twitter?

  • Chip Chipperson||

    Unless you're planning a hostile corporate takeover, that ship has sailed. The ratchet only turns one way, and now that Twitter is officially aligned with the social justice cartel, there's no going back.

  • Kristine||

  • Rational Exuberance||

    I worry that we're at a point where these companies just have it so clocked that they really are eternal. I mean, Facebook should have vanished a long time ago. And yet it's still, somehow, it's still here and as powerful as ever.

    Both Twitter and Facebook have lots of users, and apparently still have sources of money. Why "should" they have vanished? Because you disapprove of them?

    If you don't like what Twitter is doing, just don't use them.

    And guess which platform is going to be the one with media 'credibility'? Hmm.

    I think you're confusing cause and effect here. It's not that politically neutral media got duped into adopting a biased platform as a "credible source", it's that a politically biased media chooses to use a platform that reflects their political biases as a source. The problem is with the media, not the platform they chose.

  • buybuydandavis||

    And even if it didn't win, it would be a huge chance to get a lot of eyeballs.

    It's a significant financial opportunity, if not a great opportunity to stop another tentacle of the Progressive Theocracy.

  • Chip Chipperson||

    You mean like Voat did to Reddit? I'm sure they're shaking at the thought.

  • Rational Exuberance||

    What's there to "knock off"? Do you think it's "time for a Pravda knock-off"?

    Twitter is the place where social justice warriors engage in social signalling and self-righteous indignation. A large part of the attacks and "harassment" on Twitter is likely faked by the same people anyway.

    The best thing to do is just not use it. There are plenty of other sites on the web that are much less heavy handed and work better. Think of Twitter as a honey pot for people you don't like and let them live in their echo chamber.

  • MarkLastname||

    Unfortunately, I don't think that's all there is to it. To analogize the internet to a city, Twitter and Facebook aren't just buildings; they're the main square at the heart of downtown. They have almost everyone's ear; you can't ignore them even if you try. Hell, half the news stories I see these days seem to quote "notable" tweeters. If we were progressives, we would be demanding that Twitter give 'equal time' to various points of view, an imposed 'neutrality' to 'balance' out the dominant ideology. Just like progs are saying about conservative talk radio. They're principles may totalitarian, but strategically speaking, they are quite sound. Such a medium of communication can win (or lose) an ideological war in a country, and facebook and twitter are far more influential today than talk radio. But alas, our virtues are our downfall.

    I mean, just consider that most young people are on twitter, and essentially all are on facebook. The environment created in these media arguably mold the thought and behavior of (certainly young) people in the US today more than every cafe, restaurant, or bar's (or any other private establishment's) rules and policies. Pravda was nothing compared to the major social networking media as a means of spreading propaganda, only it's all privately owned. Though soon enough, thanks to regulatory capture, these companies may be sing these very reasons (the dangers of unregulated 'spaces' to users) to justify competition-quashing regulation.

  • Rational Exuberance||

    You're overestimating the importance of both Twitter and Facebook. And to the degree that people visit those sites, it's because they like the message; if you force them to listen to government propaganda, they are just going to leave anyway.

  • EMD||

    Isn't that Yik Yak?

  • Kristine||

    Personally, I already made an account. https://quitter.se/kristineaz

    There are alternatives already popping up.

  • MarkLastname||

    Someone really needs to start 'bleater' like from GTA V.

  • JWW||

    I remember when Digg came out with its big upgrade and nuked the site's functionality. I left and never came back.

  • BearOdinson||

    "...then this might be your virtual invasion of Poland."

    You know who else invaded Poland?

  • WTF||

    The Habsburgs?

  • R C Dean||

    Stalin?

  • PBR Streetgang||

    Paolo Rossi in the '82 World Cup?

  • ||

    ROSSI MADE BRAZIL CRY.

  • Chipwooder||

    the Teutonic Knights?

  • Swiss Servator||

    Cossacks?

  • toolkien||

    Who hasn't?

  • Scarecrow & WoodChipper Repair||

    The English?

  • Scarecrow & WoodChipper Repair||

    Herr Schicklegruber's father?

  • Brandybuck||

    I would invade that Poland! Oh yeah, it's gonna be a blitzkrieg tonight!

  • MSimon||

    The Mongols?

  • EMD||

    My relatives?

    Oh, you didn't mean Poland, Ohio.

  • bassjoe||

    Twitter is a private company and can do whatever the fuck it wants to regulate/censor the content posted on its site. How is this at all comparable to Orwell's Ministry of Truth? There is no indication in this article that Twitter is doing this in reaction to government pressure; it is most likely doing it because their user base are a bunch of oversensitive Millennials who don't want to risk feeling micro-aggressed over a 160-character tweet.

  • Irish ♥s ESB||

    I agree. It's stupid, but what it's mostly going to do is cause Twitter to hemorrhage users and kill the company.

  • Derp-o-Matic 5000||

    cause Twitter to hemorrhage users and kill the company

    Now that's a plan I can get behind

  • R C Dean||

    I'm tempted to get a Tweeter just so I can send it back in a huff.

  • Pay up, Palin's Buttplug!||

    And if that's too fast for you, you can send it back in a minute and a huff.

  • VartAndelay||

    +1 Groucho

  • bassjoe||

    My prediction: Twitter Inc. is going to have serious issues this year, maybe even bankruptcy. Only super low interest rates kept it alive when it wasn't showing a profit.

    This policy may hasten its demise. It is, at the very least, a damn shame from a company that used to pride itself as a defender of freedom of speech around the world, though.

  • ||

    They've already had a massive talent exit at the top. It's just burn-rate now.

  • Illocust||

    As long as the reporters keep using it Twitter will stay relevant. I don't see them letting such a perfect gold mind of content free content disappear.

  • bassjoe||

    I think the brand and platform will stick around, somewhere in some form. But to base an entire company on it, I think, is (and always was) untenable.

  • mtrueman||

    Twitter has deleted more than 125,000 accounts linked to terrorists since mid-2015, the company announced, offering some of the most detailed insight yet of how Silicon Valley is collaborating with western governments in its fight against Islamic State.

  • SimonD||

    I expect someone else to buy it (derpbook, maybe?) once it gets cheap.

  • Rational Exuberance||

    As long as the reporters keep using it Twitter will stay relevant.

    Most likely, some big media company will buy them sooner or later, and it will degenerate even more into a populist tabloid than it already has.

  • SimonD||

    I guess I should have read farther down the page :-)

  • DarrenM||

    That's the nice thing about private companies. I don't see a government service hemorrhaging users no matter how bad it is.

  • MarkLastname||

    I doubt that. People seem to like feeling protected more than they like being free. Censorial policies haven't kileld facebook, nor will they kill twitter or other social networking sites. Most users are probably indifferent and the ones who aren't are thrilled about the idea of banning people who disagree with them.

  • Long Woodchippers||

    Right, it is a private company, they can do what they like, and we can choose to stay or leave.

    However, it may be pointed out that the logic they use to justify these changes are straight out of 1984.

    In order to provide a "voice for all", they will decide who needs to be silenced.

  • esteve7||

    You are free to speak your mind as long as you agree with me or only offend the right people. Like how they can't take a joke either (John Stewart only made that mistake a few times).

    They are the new religious-right

  • Long Woodchippers||

    I'm religious right. We were never this bad. SJW's are on steroids.

  • Irish ♥s ESB||

    "“strike the right balance between fighting abuse and speaking truth to power.”"

    What if I want to speak truth to a marginalized group that's acting really stupid and is engaged in dangerously authoritarian behavior? Or should people who aren't in power be allowed to live forever in a universe of delusion and lies?

  • R C Dean||

    Or should people who aren't in power be allowed to live forever in a universe of delusion and lies?

    [Looks around comments, shrugs.]

  • dantheserene||

    Do you even need to ask? Check your privilege!

    I'm going to add a /sarc so no one thinks I mean that.

  • MSimon||

    Double check!

  • Intraveneous Woodchipper||

    Discount?

  • GILMORE™||

  • Crusty Juggler||

    the blog and Youtube channel of anti-Gamer Gate activist Anita Sarkeesian

    Who was at the center of the most important issue in the history of the world, ever.

  • GILMORE™||

    She killed Biggie & Tupac?

  • Swiss Servator||

    I larfed.

  • BearOdinson||

    “strike the right balance between fighting abuse and speaking truth to power.”

    What the fuck does this even mean? Whose speaking truth and who has the power?

    "Shouldn't the bucket be on your head?"

  • R C Dean||

    That was my question. I thought "fighting abuse" and "speaking truth to power" were what proggy leftoids did, and that speaking truth to power could never be abuse.

    I haz a confuse.

    The real balance is between fighting abuse and free speech. The fact that proggy leftoids seem to confuse free speech with speaking truth to power is . . . revealing.

  • Derp-o-Matic 5000||

    The powers will determine who may speak truth to them.

  • Loki||

    And what truth is..

  • Chipwooder||

    You said it would be a mailman I know, and you're a mailman I know!

    One of my favorite episodes. Mainly due to the presence of Wilfred Brimley.

  • BearOdinson||

    Now you want that mail, don't you Mr. Kramer!?!

  • Chipwooder||

    Best gag is that he immediately recognizes the Postmaster General, someone who 99% of the population would never have even heard of.

  • Pay up, Palin's Buttplug!||

    Well, Benjamin Franklin is pretty recognizable…

  • Illocust||

    I thought we all knew from the beginning that this was just a way to make sure only the right people got to tweet on Twitter. I'm honestly just hoping that this site dies already. It's a dumb controversy manufacturing machine. At least Facebook serves a real purpose beyond coordinating outrage (quickest way to ask my social circle what kind of plant I've just been gifted). Twitter is just important because it's important. All the news sites monitor for the newest story about what stupid thing some 12 year old in Michigan said. It's just blagh all around.

  • Pay up, Palin's Buttplug!||

    (quickest way to ask my social circle what kind of plant I've just been gifted)

    Giant hogweed?

  • ||

    How did you come up with your name?

  • Illocust||

    Short for ILoveLocust. When I was young I misspelled Lotus (like under ten). Locust then became my go to name. When I started up on Neopets I named my PetPets and Pets Locust, so I named myself ILoveLocust. The name was always available so I kept using it. A while back (ten plus years ago) I lost my old email account (Hotmail or something like that, I can't even remember), so all the old sites I registered for in my teens and promptly forgot the password for needed a new account name. I shortened it to ILLocust.

  • ||

    That makes sense (and Neopets sounds dystopian). Regardless, your name sounds like "ILL locust", to me. That doesn't seem to do you justice. I'll call you Lotus.

  • commodious spittoon||

    Yep. A plurality of voices, all speaking one opinion.

  • DarrenM||

    Baritones, tenors, and sopranos.

  • Loki||

    That's a microagression against basses and altos.

  • Diane Merriam||

    And what about us poor contraltos? Not good enough for the rest of you, huh? :D

  • MarkLastname||

    Not to mention falsettos, the manliest of tones.

  • JWW||

    or as edited on twitter:

    and women, black and , gay and .

  • SugarFree||

    I know you guys are immersed in it, Robby, but Twitter just isn't that important in the grand scheme of things. It's barely one step up from monkeys flinging feces at the zoo.

  • commodious spittoon||

    Except monkeys are funny. Twitter is just sad.

  • Lee G||

    puppymonkeybaby is even funnier

  • R C Dean||

    [Pours more bleach in eyeballs.]

  • Swiss Servator||

    *begs for some of the bleach*

  • Trshmnstr, terror of the trash||

    It's the damn spindly arms!

  • FreeRadical||

    puppymonkeybaby is the best super bowl commercial ever made.

  • Crusty Juggler||

    But then how would we know who Roosh V was, or learn the importance of gamer-gate? Was there a better way for Michelle Obama to bring back the girls kidnapped by Boko Haram?

    Like it or not Twitter is supes important.

  • Crusty Juggler||

    And how about the ice bucket challenge, where the Twitterers got together to beat cancer? Huh? Yeah.

  • Diane Reynolds (Paul.)||

    That was for beating cancer? I thought it was an internet wet t-shirt contest.

  • DarrenM||

    That's where it started, but it kinda got out of hand.

  • MSimon||

    Bigger than Ds. is more than a handful. I has big hands.

  • Crusty Juggler||

    Without Twitter how was Rob Delaney going to get cast on an original Amazon show? Huh?

  • Mazakon||

    learn the importance of gamer-gate

    Well there are quite a lot of people who support Gamergate who make videos on YouTube.

  • R C Dean||

    Yeah, for most people outside of the media/politics world, I think its more "Look what some twat twitted on Tweetface" than "OMG, this 180 character message just changed the WORLD!".

    And that assumes that, unlike most people outside the media bubble, then even have a Tweeter.

  • SimonD||

    Twitter is just a force multiplier. When someone has a really stupid thought, he/she/it can count on 10,000 other people who are just as stupid to have the same thought. Now 'VOILA' we have a movement.

  • MarkLastname||

    I feel weird saying this, but: if you were as young as I am you wouldn't be so optimistic about what fraction of people live outside the 'media bubble.' A few years ago my friends and I would joke about twitter. Who the fuck uses that? We'd make fun of anyone who admitted to having a twitter account. Today (I should note I don't have the same friends, being in a new city) when I admit to people that I don't have a twitter account, a solid half of them look at me like I just told them I don't own a phone.

  • Derp-o-Matic 5000||

    It's barely one step up from monkeys flinging feces at the zoo.

    False. Feces-flinging monkeys at least have entertainment value.

  • SugarFree||

    Look, we all love poo monkeys... I meant as a medium of communication.

  • ||

    If monkeys were to start flinging feces at the zoo, that'd definitely communicate dislike. The medium, alas, would be an unfortunate choice.

  • Chip Chipperson||

    And that's how libertarians and conservatives lost the culture to the progressives.

    Not understanding that all the ground they conceded as 'not that important' turned out to actually be REALLY fucking important.

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    I sent Twitter’s head of Global Policy Outreach a tweet asking why the council’s composition is so one-sided...

    You don't ask Hitler for input on sentencing guidelines at Nuremberg.

  • Diane Reynolds (Paul.)||

    Comment of the day.

  • ||

    He wasn't around for comment by then.

  • GILMORE™||

    "I sent Twitter’s head of Global Policy Outreach a tweet asking why the council’s composition is so one-sided "

    Even if a panel of overseers is "diverse", there's no guarantee it will even approach anything 'sane'

    It reminds me of the Vice article about the sexual-harassment by muslim-immigrants @ some pop festival in Sweden, where they ensured to get "both sides" of the story = soliciting perspectives from Radical Marxist Feminists and a Neo-Nazi group.

    IOW, this idea of "inclusion" is ultimately bullshit.

    You will never get any rational consensus via a panel of radical political organizations. The only people who should be policing content is users themselves. If you don't like what you're hearing, change the channel.

  • Cyto||

    That is also overlooking the definition of "diverse". In proggie world, "Diverse" means "includes disenfranchised groups like ethnic minorities, non-heterosexual folk, unions, democrats, progressives, women who are progressive, other progressives.... you know, the right sorts of people. It does not mean "includes white men, republicans, libertarians, conservatives, conservative women, feminists who don't think that every word spoken in disagreement with a woman is misogynistic hate-speech....

  • buybuydandavis||

    In Proggy town, diverse means banning the unProggy.

  • Diane Reynolds (Paul.)||

    The council includes more than 40 organizations that will be tasked with helping Twitter, “strike the right balance between fighting abuse and speaking truth to power.”

    I haven't dived/diven/doved into any of your links, Robby, but I assume because you put the above in quotes it's an actual source quote.

    If you're 'speaking truth to power', IS there a proper balance than can even exist? Isn't that a bit like offering moderatism in justice?

  • Derp-o-Matic 5000||

    You may speak as exactly much truth to power as the powers allow.

  • commodious spittoon||

    It's the same mindset Clinton expressed in insisting that she can't be part of the establishment, despite being an establishment bulwark for decades, because she hasn't got a penis. "Speaking truth to power" in social justice parlance simply means shouting epithets at white men, even when you are the power.

  • FreeRadical||

    Are we absolutely sure she doesn't have a penis?

  • Catatafish & Woodchips||

    It's a Cthulhu like appendage, Stygian black in color, covered in a countless multitude of needle-toothed maws with an insatiable hunger for pantsuits and your natural rights.

  • Intraveneous Woodchipper||

    "It's a Cthulhu like appendage, Stygian black in color, covered in a countless multitude of needle-toothed maws with an insatiable hunger for pantsuits and your natural rights."

    This literally made my shitty day. Thank you so, so much!

  • Loki||

    No, but we'll have to take her word for it. Unless you want to take one for the team and go check.

  • FreeRadical||

    I fear that it is likely to be exactly as Catatafish has described it, and I am therefore too much of a pussy to look for Hillary's penis.

  • SimonD||

    Of course she has one. It used to belong to Vince Foster. She keeps it in a hidden niche in her office.

  • buybuydandavis||

    She keeps it in a hidden niche in her office.

    I think you've got a typo at the end there.

  • Diane Reynolds (Paul.)||

    By the way, I'm in support of anything that ushers in the Next Twitter. Because this sure looks a lot like a microcosm of humanity. It starts with a general idea of freewheeling freedom, but eventually devolves into self-contradictory rules...

  • Lee G||

    #twitterisforlosers

  • Diane Reynolds (Paul.)||

    You forgot the 'c' in closers.

  • ||

    You confused coffee and Twitter

  • bassjoe||

    Well, at least the Council is composed of so many members it probably won't actually be able to do anything "productive".

  • Florida Man||

    hope I don’t get banned for saying that
    Bob, get yourself banned. It'll be funny and then you can write an article about how Twitter is silencing the media. Then start a new account under your hair.

  • Derp-o-Matic 5000||

    Rico's hair doesn't already have an account? I would have thought it had more followers than Rico.

  • Florida Man||

    I don't own a Twitter so I can't be sure.

  • Diane Reynolds (Paul.)||

    His hair's got one here, why does it need a twitter account too?

  • Robby's Hair||

    Then start a new account under your hair.

    You're on my list.

  • Florida Man||

    *pulls out hair net*
    Come get some boy!

  • Robby's Hair||

    Are you sure about that? The last human to cross me was Angelina Jolie, and look how she ended up.

  • Diane Reynolds (Paul.)||

    Married to Brad Pitt?

  • Florida Man||

    With a private gun range. Deal

  • ||

    Twitter is literally the dumbest thing in the history of the internet. It's a genuine stupid magnet, I think it even outdoes Derpbook in that regard.

  • R C Dean||

    Twitter is for high-speed derp. Facebook is for bone-deep derp.

  • Diane Reynolds (Paul.)||

    Why do you think that? It's merely an outlet for people to broadcast an itinerant thought to dozens, hundreds or even millions of people. Seems pretty benign.

  • Rt. Hon. Judge Woodrow Chipper||

    It's a primary source for 90% of the local news.

  • Diane Reynolds (Paul.)||

    Exactly. It's like a constant living poll about what people are thinking.

  • R C Dean||

    None of that is inconsistent with Hyperion"s hypothesis. (Say that out loud. Seriously.)

  • MarkLastname||

    No itinerant thought that can be done in that few characters is worth broadcasting. I think Twitter is like swimming in a sewage dump. At best it's benign and just smells bad, at worst you get a staph. infection.

  • Chipwooder||

    How many people actually use Twitter, as opposed to just reading the dumb shit other people post on it? Not very many, if I had to guess. If it weren't for other people reposting the dumb shit elsewhere, I wouldn't even know it exists.

  • Irish ♥s ESB||

    There are 300 million active users. The trouble is that it's not growing at all and they have no idea how to monetize it.

  • ||

    There are 300M active accounts. Some people run as many as 100 if they manage twitter marketing for several companies. Actual human eyes on ads is probably not better than 25, rapidly aging out of the key demographic.

  • Chipwooder||

    Out of those 300 million, though, what percentage of them don't do anything more than reading other people's Twitter? I have a Twitter account, but all I do with it is follow hockey and baseball writers for the occasional breaking news. I think I've sent many 10 tweets of my own in 4 years.

  • Diane Reynolds (Paul.)||

    I suspect the majority of them are people who are following.

  • Mazakon||

    I've sent over 900 so far, mostly from talking about games with other people who play.

  • Catatafish & Woodchips||

    I use it for news article links, Reason included. I'll retweet some that I find particularly interesting.

    Oh, and The Bourbon Review feed. So I can identify what medicine I need to buy in order to wade through the vast amount of retard between the articles.

  • Paulpemb||

    There are companies out there that sell Twitter followers to people who want to make it appear as if they have a huge groundswell of support. Some media and political figures have millions of fake followers that they purchase from these services to give themselves the impression of being more popular and influential than they really are.

  • Long Woodchippers||

    17k tweets for me, and sounds like you may have read some of them

  • Illocust||

    Why not just a static image advertisement. Pay X-amount and we'll put 'Twitter brought to you by Y" on the header. A standardized static image won't cause the loading problems dislike by most internet users and should be able to get around Ad-Block. With 300 million users, many of them celebrities and reporters, they should be able to fund the continued running of their site.

  • BearOdinson||

    I thought Twitter was mildly entertaining for a couple of weeks. But digging for a few 140 character jewels in that septic tank of Kardashian, SJW and general derpitude just isn't worth it.

  • Diane Reynolds (Paul.)||

    Twitter seems to have meaningful utility for celebrities or generally famous people. I really have no idea why other people would use twitter to transmit messages-- receive messages from your favorite celebs, sure, but transmit messages? I've thought about using twitter to chat with my friends, but then I realized we do group text messages- and we all have unlimited text/picture messaging with our cell plans. So Twitter doesn't make any sense.

  • Swiss Servator||

    Looks like we have one for the concussion protocol over here...

  • Catatafish & Woodchips||

    (whispers to Switzy)

    Are we the woodchippers?

  • Loki||

    A concussion is a form of traumatic brain injury, so I don't think that's a problem in his case.

  • Loki||

    1. I find it so interesting that people get so worked up when it's pointed out that they seem little concerned about free speech on a Libertarian web site.

    The person you were responding to was specifically referring to the dumb shit people post on twitter, not saying that free speech was "dumb shit". This is something that should have been obvious to anyone not experiencing a neurological issue

    2. To the point of alleging insanity and even suggesting physical threats (and not condemning them).

    I'm guessing you're referring to Swiss Servator's comment about the "concussion protocol" as a "physical threat." It's not. The concussion protocol is an evaluation that football players under go to test them for a suspected concussion after a hard hit during a game. Swiss was suggesting that perhaps you had a concussion because your comment was nonsensical, as if perhaps you had suffered brain trauma. It wasn't a threat, which is why no one condemned it.

    To which I replied that you don't have to worry about brain trauma. Since you probably didn't get what I was going for, allow me to explain it to you: in order to have brain trauma one would first have to have a brain. You seem to be missing the required equipment.

    3. What could be the agenda here.....

    The only agenda is that people here tend to dislike idiotic trolls who don't have the requisite brain power to wipe their own ass.

  • Long Woodchippers||

    epic. where's the 'like' button?

  • Horatio||

    You leave HM out of this!

  • Loki||

    Maybe I'll start another blog...

    Yeah, go ahead.

  • buybuydandavis||

    Not putting much value on Twitter is not the same thing as not putting much value on free speech.

    I happen to think people pooh poohing this event as a nothing are wrong, but pooh poohing this event doesn't mean that they don't value free speech, it means they don't value Twitter that much.

    Vote Woodchipper 2016!

  • Rational Exuberance||

    "Free speech" means that government shall make no law.... Twitter can do whatever they want.

  • Francisco d'Anconia||

    For my part, I would feel more comfortable if the Trust & Safety Council included at least a few principled speech or tech freedom groups, like the Foundation for Individual Rights and the Electronic Frontier Foundation.

    For my part, I would feel more comfortable if the Trust & Safety Council fucked off and died in a fire.

  • Diane Reynolds (Paul.)||

    Councils aren't people!

  • buybuydandavis||

    In a woodchiper!

  • BearOdinson||

    I would feel more comfortable if the board of directors of Twitter (or the owners if it is privately held) just made a fucking decision and said "This is our thing. You can post this but not that. If you don't like it, go do something else".

  • Ron||

    thats the actual point isn't it they are just deflecting blame by claiming someone else made the rules.

  • SimonD||

    The problem is the progderp definition of acceptable speech changes so often that the board would never be able to do anything else. It's easier to create a full-time censor department and give them a budget.

    However, a lot of progs seem to do it for the pure joy of derpness; Twitter could probably make a commission for free.

  • MarkLastname||

    That's not the point. The point is to let one hundred flowers bloom. They want people to think they can do whatever they want, even though they really can't, that's most of the fun in it apparently.

  • Ship of Theseus||

    OT: http://www.politico.com/story/.....ian-218822

    Surprisingly, the elder Paul seemed more attracted to the views of Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders, who is giving Hillary Clinton a run for her money in the Democratic primary.
    “On occasion, Bernie comes up with libertarian views when he talks about taking away the cronyism on Wall Street, so in essence he’s right, and occasionally he voted against war,” the former Texas congressman said when asked if there was a candidate who was truly for the free market

    Sometimes I wonder about Ron...

  • Chipwooder||

    I think that, at this point, Ron likes jerking the establishment's chain more than anything else.

  • Ship of Theseus||

    He's jerking something...

  • BearOdinson||

    Bernie is going to take cronyism away from Wall Street and put it straight back into government. So instead of the banks, who can seriously fuck shit up, but you don't have to use (you can put your money in your mattress, buy gold, pay cash for your house, etc.), more government employees whom YOU CAN'T NOT USE.

  • Diane Reynolds (Paul.)||

    Using the snippet you posted, I don't see anything wrong with what Ron Paul said... sure, Bernie's solutions to those identified problems will make the problem worse, because Bernie is genetically incapable of understanding the problems he tells us he's going to tackle.

    But look at CNBC for example. It's full of people who think like Shrike. Stimulus good, bailouts good, wealth effects good, currency manipulation good. As long as their beloved S&P goes up, capitalism is working. The second they start losing a dollar, then we've got a market failure and they start demanding "leadership" which is a codeword for fed manipulation and government-induced wealth effects.

  • DarrenM||

    Just wait until to ban yourself.

  • Pay up, Palin's Buttplug!||

    The council includes more than 40 organizations that will be tasked with helping Twitter, “strike the right balance between fighting abuse and speaking truth to power.”

    Only properly vetted and approved truths may be spoken to power.

  • buybuydandavis||

    All truths are equal, but some are more equal than others.

  • ||

    Naturally. When the head woman of Trust and Safety outlined Twitter's policy with "empowering" "voice" and the like as central words, ideology and direction were clear.

    Still, inspiring thinking to include a bunch of domestic violence groups to ensure the safety of internet communication.

  • Loki||

    I hope I don’t get banned for saying that.

    At his point, if I had anything to do with Twitter, I'd wear getting banned like a badge of honor.

  • ||

    "The council includes more than 40 organizations that will be tasked with helping Twitter, “strike the right balance between fighting abuse and speaking truth to power.” But if the goal was really to find some middle ground between total free speech and safeguards against harassment, one might have expect Twitter to solicit some diversity of opinion. In fact, despite the press release’s claim that the council includes a “diversity of voices,” virtually none of the council members are properly classified as free speech organizations"

    They'll achieve no such thing.

    And screw Twitter and all the little twats causing trouble on its platform.

  • Chipwooder||

    Something I've always wondered - if they wanted to call the messages they publish "tweets", why isn't it called Tweeter?

  • GILMORE™||

    you're doing it wrong.

    it should be, "If this service is called "Twitter"...why aren't all its users called 'Twits'?"

  • PapayaSF||

    Did you hear that YouTube, Twitter, and Facebook will be merging into one company? It will be called YouTwitFace.

    /2009 joke

  • W. Chipper Dove||

    No, it's "I'm working on a porn app that combines the best parts of MySpace, Twitter, and Facebook. I'm calling it TweetOnMyFace."

  • ManIntheMirror||

    •"Dacher Keltner, Professor of Psychology and Faculty Director of UC Berkeley’s Greater Good Science Center" just one name on the full list of this Orwellian group...and it is Orwellian no matter if it is a private company

    The road to hell and all...

  • Catatafish & Woodchips||

    The fact that there is such a thing as the "Greater Good Science Center" fills me with bone-numbing dread.

  • Loki||

  • The Grinch||

    Twitter is an intellectual black hole whose users make Facebook's horde look like MIT's faculty. I applaud their implementation of policies that will ensure their being flushed down the drain.

  • Chumby||

    Then stop using Twitter.

  • ||

    Guess they believe their stock is still way overprice and needs to be spike further more.

  • Ron||

    the more people who advise the more rules you'll get and they won't be the rules you want.

  • PapayaSF||

    I think the main functions of Twitter are: 1) PR for celebrities, and 2) ending the careers of people who say anything un-PC.

  • TBlakely||

    Somehow I doubt 'hate' speech against conservatives and Christians will be impacted at all on Twitter.

  • Chip Chipperson||

    How can there be hate speech against conservatives and Christians? It's not wrong to hate Nazis is it? Or slave owners? Of course not. And everyone knows that conservatives and Christians are just nazis who wish they could still own slaves. So everyone should be free to go after them all they want.

  • TBlakely||

    I assume you're being sarcastic. It's hard to tell given how many SJWs are whacked out, ignorant nutjobs.

  • Loki||

  • PapayaSF||

  • croaker||

    Next up, Twitter adopts China's "good citizen" scoring scheme.

  • wingnutx||

    I hope hiring SJWs works as well for them as it did for Reddit.

  • EscherEnigma||

    If they don't kick Trump off Twitter, I think you can rest assured it's more gesture then change.
    If they do kick Trump off Twitter, I'm gonna be too busy laughing at his reaction to care.

  • ant1sthenes||

    But if they kick him off Twitter, how will you know his reaction?

  • Intraveneous Woodchipper||

    If one does not Live tweer one's reaction, does one's reaction actually happen?

  • EscherEnigma||

    TV Interviews.

  • buybuydandavis||

    Anita Sarkeesian, the Elmer Gantry of Feminism, gets worldwide power.

    How revolting.

  • Roger Perdactor||

    This is pretty crazy.
    Honestly, I cannot believe that we can't put up with a few trolls every now and again. I don't think the current system is broken.

  • tikibomber||

    They should correct Anita Sarkeesian, who is Anti-Gaming in general.

  • ||

    “strike the right balance between fighting abuse and speaking truth to power.”

    I didn't need to read past 'speaking truth to power'.

    Besides, I am not a twit.

    Also, get the fuck off my lawn.

    *chambers round*

  • batathojaf||

    My last pay check was $16400 working 8 hours a week online. My sisters friend has been averaging 8k for months now and she works about 19 hours a week. I can't believe how easy it was once I tried it out. This is what I do....

    A­l­p­h­a-C­a­r­e­e­r­s.c­o­m

  • dingdong||

    It's hard to believe anyone would compare Orwell's book to an open, transparent citizen advisory panel for a private communications network and publish it on a site with the word 'reason' in it's address.

    It's like raising your hand and saying, "I'm an idiot."

  • ahmed kamel||

    Eh bien, je suis un bon poste watcher vous pouvez dire et je ne donne pas une seule raison de critiquer ou de donner une bonne critique à un poste. Je lis des blogs de 5 dernières années et ce blog est vraiment bon cet écrivain a les capacités pour faire avancer les choses i aimerais voir nouveau poste par vous Merci
    اخبار
    اخبار مصر

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