Take some fucking responsibility for your platform.
Twitter may be one of the most dominant social media platforms, but that doesn’t actually mean it’s all that great. It just happens to have managed to ride the wave of social media popularity by being the most easy to use platform of its kind. Yet, every day the website gets worse and its all because of its Twitter CEO, known as @Jack on the platform.
Every day Jack gets requests to ban Nazis, and he doesn’t. When several sites finally banned alt right figure Alex Jones, Jack defended Twitter’s refusal to ban the hate figure saying that Jones had never violated Twitter rules. What’s worse is that he lay the responsibility to tackle the right on journalists, tweeting:
“Accounts like Jones’ can often sensationalize issues and spread unsubstantiated rumors, so it’s critical journalists document, validate, and refute such information directly so people can form their own opinions. This is what serves the public conversation best.”
This is absolute bullshit. Jack doesn’t give a shit. Twitter keeps refusing to validate journalistic accounts, particularly intersectional ones and yet Nazis and the ‘alt-right’ (what liberals call Nazis when they’re too scared to say the word ‘Nazi’) regularly get the blue tick next to their username. Twitter has been used to target survivors of the Parkland shooting, it was used during Gamergate to target women (especially trans women), and marginalised women – especially women of colour – get abuse every day on the platform but rarely is any action ever taken.
It’s not up to journalists to police Jack’s site for him. We do write stories on abuse. We do report accounts. What does Twitter do? Nothing. Jack is responsible for his own platform and to put the responsibility on anyone else is utter cowardice.
“It’s not up to journalists to police Jack’s site for him”
But guess who else loves attacking journalists? The right. Journalists are put under increasing pressure. Journalists are targeted for hate, the President of the US keeps whipping up resentment against journalists. When we report real news which people don’t want to hear they label it fake news but then swallow any anti-immigrant lie they come across because they want to.
Pushing responsibility onto journalists was a deliberate choice from Jack. He has no intention of improving his site because Twitter gets infamy and attention from the outrageous crap hate figures tweet. It suits him. So he pushes the blame and accountability onto a group that has no power over what Twitter decides. Facebook has come under scrutiny and even faced a boycott earlier this year. Perhaps it’s time that same anger turned to Twitter.