2024 Social Media Vibe Check

About a year ago, I wrote about the state of things at Twitter. It’s gone worse than I could have imagined, although I won’t cover that here. There are a zillion think pieces on that Musk has done to that company and what it means for Twitter, social media, and our overall discourse. I’ll leave […]

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Using Day One to Scratch my Timehop Itch

Over the past few years I’ve tried to curtail my use of social media. I’ve unfollowed a ton of accounts on Instagram and Twitter, deleted my Facebook account, and mostly lurk in general. I’ve also deleted all of my old posts – I know that stuff is still searchable for Twitter if you are so […]

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Donald Trump’s move against Twitter factchecking could backfire 

From The Guardian:

But the regulation could backfire, at least in terms of creating the internet Trump desires. By barring social media companies from using the nuanced forms of moderation they currently employ, the executive order could force them to resort to heavy-handed actions: deleting posts, or blocking users, rather than simply factchecking or reducing the reach of the worst material.

Similarly, removing section 230 protections entirely from a technology firm would be unlikely to force it to act as a politically neutral “mere conduit”, since any moderation at all – even simply deleting the vast quantities of automated spam that hit platforms such as Facebook and Twitter each day – would then open them up to lawsuits about the content they had left up.

I feel like this kind of sums up Trump’s presidency. He’s been flailing from one self-induced blunder to the next with no real strategy in mind. Rather than, you know, acting presidential and posting ideas that are truthful, he’s getting emotional yet again and will potentially create a situation that compels social media to disallow or fully censor the sort of hate, lies and misinformation he’s so well known for.

To be clear, I don’t think that a more tightly regulated social media landscape is an overall good thing. However the irony of the President issuing an order that makes it more likely to have his posts outright deleted does bring me some joy.