Meanwhile, Dorsey said the ban also reflects our “failure to foster healthy conversation.” (Twitter spent a lot of During the past two years In an effort to figure out how to make its platform “healthier”.) He added that he feels Twitter’s decision has set a “dangerous” precedent that “an individual or company has a part of the global public conversation”.
Having to take these actions breaks up the public conversation. They divide us. It limits the possibility of clarification, redemption and learning. And it sets a precedent that I feel is dangerous: the power of an individual or company over part of the global public conversation.
– Jack (@jack) January 14, 2021
Dorsey also responded to criticism that the company engages in censorship, writing that “a company that makes a business decision to amend itself differs from a government revoking access.” He also made clear that Twitter had not coordinated with other companies that also banned or suspended Trump in recent days.
You can read his full comments below:
“I’m not celebrating or feeling proud of having realDonaldTrump banned from Twitter, or how we got here. After a clear warning of taking this action, we have made a decision with the best information we have based on the threats to physical integrity on and off Twitter. Is that true? I think that’s true? It was the right decision for Twitter. We were faced with an extraordinary and unbearable circumstance, forcing us to focus all of our work on public safety. Offline damage as a result of online speech is clearly real, which drives our policy and enforcement above all else.
However, having to block an account has real and important repercussions. While there are clear and obvious exceptions, I feel the ban is ultimately a failure for us to foster healthy conversation. Time for us to reflect on our operations and the environment around us. Having to take these actions breaks up the public conversation. They divide us. It limits the possibility of clarification, redemption and learning. And it sets a precedent that I feel is dangerous: the power of an individual or company over part of the global public conversation. Verification and accountability about this power has always been the fact that a service like Twitter is a small part of the larger public conversation that takes place online.
If people do not agree with our rules and enforcement, they can simply go for another internet service. This concept was challenged last week when a number of major internet tool providers also decided not to host what they found dangerous. I don’t think this was coordinated. Most likely: the companies reached their own conclusions or were encouraged by the actions of others. This moment in time may require this dynamic, but in the long term it will be destructive to the noble purpose and ideals of the open internet. A company that makes a business decision to amend itself differs from a government removing access, and yet it can feel the same. Yes, we all need to critically consider and enforce the inconsistencies in our policy. Yes, we need to look at how our service can motivate distraction and harm. Yes, we need more transparency in our moderation processes. All this cannot erode the global free and open internet.
The reason I love #Bitcoin so much is because of the model it illustrates: an essential internet technology that no individual or entity is controlling or influencing. This is what the internet wants, and it will become more of it over time. We are trying to do our part by funding an initiative around a decentralized open standard for social media. Our goal is to be a customer of this standard for the public conversation class on the Internet. Call it bluesky.
This will take time to build. We’re in the process of interviewing and hiring people, and we’re looking at starting a benchmark from scratch or contributing to something that already exists. Regardless of the final direction, we’ll do this work entirely through public transparency. It is important to realize that this is a time of great uncertainty and struggle for many around the world. Our goal at this moment is to disarm as much as possible, and to make sure that we are all building toward a greater common understanding, and a more peaceful presence on the ground. I think the Internet and global public chat is the best and most relevant way we have this. Also, I realize it doesn’t feel that way today. Everything we learn at this moment will improve our efforts and propel us to be who we are: one humanity working together. “