Twitter makes their own rules. The majority of those who chose to use the social media app know that. Whether you’re a conservative and have watched the biased actions by Twitter that have ended in suspension or permanently banning fellow conservatives from the platform, or if you’re a liberal and have cheered when conservative accounts are penalized for posting the truth, you know Twitter’s rules are very much their own. These rules aren’t based in reality, science, or fact. No, their rules are based solely on THEIR ideology. If you disagree with Twitter’s ideology, and backup your opinions using FACTS, well, that potentially leads to suspension or all out banning of your account. They habitually choose fantasy over reality, and use the term “context on the platform,” (which is judged by a group of employees who share the same ideology) when assessing individual posts that have been reported on the platform.
Stating facts on Twitter can result in a strike on your account, and posting too many facts will get you suspended.
Before we go any further, let’s clarify.
What is a fact?
Merriam Webster defines the word FACT as “1a: something that has actual existence; 1b: an actual occurrence; 2a: a piece of information presented as having objective reality; 2b: the quality of being actual : ACTUALITY“
What is fiction?
Merriam Webster defines the word FICTION as “1a: something invented by the imagination or feigned; 2a: an assumption of a possibility as a fact irrespective of the question of its truth”
What appears to be the norm at Twitter is to embrace fantasy and ignore reality. Forget about hard facts that can be backed with evidence, let’s embrace what someone FEELS rather than what actually IS–all under the guise of “healthy conversations”.
In the March 5th, 2019 Joe Rogan podcast #1258, independent journalist Tim Pool joined Vijaya Gadde, global lead for legal, policy, and trust and safety at Twitter and CEO of Twitter, Jack Dorsey in a 3 hour, 25 min conversation about Twitter’s policies and the policing of those policies on the platform.
The term “healthy conversations” is one that has always bothered me. Who decides what is considered “healthy” or “unhealthy”? When Pool brings this up to Dorsey, the Twitter CEO responds by breaking it down into “four indicators” he says will help to define what Twitter considers to be “healthy conversation”:
- Shared attention – is everyone who’s talking about a certain subject focused on the same thing?
- Shared reality – Dorsey explains shared reality as, “not whether something is factual, but are we sharing the same fact?”
- Receptivity – “are the participants receptive to the debate and civility and expressing their opinion? “
- Variety of perspective – “are we actually seeing the full spectrum of any topic that’s being talked about?”
Dorsey breaks down the four indicators here:
Rogan then brings up the concept of a possible “road to redemption” where one who has been banned from using Twitter has the possibility to regain access to their account and essentially, access to the public square from which they were once banned.
Dorsey responds by saying there is both redemption and rehabilitation. Temporary suspension, Dorsey explains, is their slap on the wrist to help rehabilitate and redirect activity they deem as “unhealthy conversation” or activity deemed as offensive enough to receive punishment as something that can be corrected by giving someone a “time out”.
Pool brought up that Periscope has a jury-based system where they ask 1,000 random users whether or not they find certain comments offensive which proves no bias when it comes to deciding what content is or is not deemed offensive and suggested Twitter should look into a similar system.
When it comes to the idea of permanent suspension, the entire panel agreed that should only apply in extreme cases and those who are currently under permanent suspension by Twitter or those who have been banned entirely should have the right to redeem themselves and earn their place on the platform.
Gadde asked the rest of the panel what they thought was a reasonable amount of time for those suspensions to be upheld saying, “band of a year, 5 years, 10 years? … What is a reasonable ban in this kind of context?” Rogan replies by suggesting that users should have the ability to explain why they want to be back on the platform, and either what they felt they did wrong to receive the suspension, or even why the feel they did nothing wrong to earn the suspension, and that information then being reviewed by Twitter.
Watch the full podcast here: