×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Twitter CEO Admits Company Didn’t Fully Grasp Abuse Problem

Twitter didn’t anticipate the amount of abuse and misinformation its service would help facilitate, admitted CEO Jack Dorsey in a series of tweets Thursday morning. “We didn’t fully predict or understand the real-world negative consequences,” Dorsey said.

“We have witnessed abuse, harassment, troll armies, manipulation through bots and human-coordination, misinformation campaigns, and increasingly divisive echo chambers,” he continued frankly. “We aren’t proud of how people have taken advantage of our service, or our inability to address it fast enough.”

Dorsey said that the company had tried to combat the downsides of its service with a reactive approach, which at times had fallen short of its audience’s expectations. “We‘ve been accused of apathy, censorship, political bias, and optimizing for our business and share price instead of the concerns of society,” he wrote. “This is not who we are, or who we ever want to be.”

Going forward, Dorsey committed to increasingly focus on using Twitter to facilitate healthy conversations, instead of just combating unhealthy ones. For that, Twitter is looking to partner with outside experts to figure out how to even measure the health of public conversations. The company put out a public request for proposals from scientists and research organizations, and vows to fund work to help it measure public health on Twitter.

“What we know is we must commit to a rigorous and independently vetted set of metrics to measure the health of public conversation on Twitter,” Dorsey said. “We must commit to sharing our results publicly to benefit all who serve the public conversation.”

Twitter isn’t the only social media company to expand its focus from anti-abuse measures to a more holistic take on reinforcing positive sentiments and healthy conversations. Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg has in recent months also talked about putting a bigger emphasis on building community, and his company has begun to publish some research on the effect using Facebook has on mental health. The gist of that research was that passive consumption can have negative consequences, whereas active participation is a net positive.

Dorsey, for his part, seemed to acknowledge Thursday that there may be no easy solutions to turn Twitter into a healthier platform: “Definitely don’t believe this will be easy,” he tweeted. “That’s why we must be more open.”

More Digital

  • T-mobile - Netflix - John Legere

    T-Mobile Passes Netflix Price Hike Through to Subscribers

    T-Mobile is getting ready to raise prices for subscribers who have taken advantage of its “Netflix On Us” promotion: The mobile carrier will begin charging existing customers who have participated in the promotion an additional $2 per month to account for Netflix’s recent price increase. Consumers will see their bill go up starting on 6/2. [...]

  • Oona King

    Snap Hires Google Exec Oona King as First VP of Diversity and Inclusion

    Snap continues to fill out the ranks of its revamped leadership team: The Snapchat parent tapped Oona King, most recently Google’s director of diversity strategy and a former member of British Parliament with the Labour Party, as its first VP of diversity and inclusion. King, who starts at Snap on June 11, is also the [...]

  • Chrissy Teigen

    Chrissy Teigen to Rule Over Small-Claims 'Chrissy's Court' in Show for Jeffrey Katzenberg's Quibi

    Chrissy Teigen is going full-on “Judge Judy” in a reality show ordered by Quibi, the mobile-video subscription start-up venture founded by Jeffrey Katzenberg. In each episode of “Chrissy’s Court,” the model-influencer will reign as the “judge” over one small-claims case. Like the reality TV shows it’s patterned after, the plaintiffs, defendants, and disputes are real [...]

  • IGTV-Landscape

    Instagram's IGTV Adds Support for Horizontal Videos — but Still No Monetization

    Instagram is still searching to find the right recipe for IGTV, the long-form video service it debuted nearly a year ago. In the hopes of encouraging usage of IGTV, Instagram is breaking the original design that allowed only vertical video– to now support horizontally oriented videos as well. It’s a change that bows to the [...]

  • Facebook Logo

    Facebook Took Down 2.2 Billion Fake Accounts in Q1

    Facebook saw a huge jump of bots trying to create fake accounts during the first quarter, with the company revealing Thursday that it took down 2.19 billion such accounts over the first three months of this year. “We’ve seen a steep increase in the creation of abusive, fake accounts on Facebook in the last six [...]

  • Netflix Unveils Lonely Island Musical Tribute

    Netflix Unveils Lonely Island Musical Tribute to Jose Canseco, Mark McGwire

    The Lonely Island comedy troupe has dropped a half-hour Netflix special featuring a musical tribute to baseball greats Jose Canseco and Mark McGwire. “The Lonely Island Presents: The Unauthorized Bash Brothers Experience” features Andy Samberg and Akiva Schaffer as the former Oakland Athletics teammates who became known as “the Bash Brothers” for their prowess at [...]

  • Rotten Tomatoes

    Rotten Tomatoes Revamps Movie Audience Scores to Focus on Verified Ticket Buyers

    Rotten Tomatoes is dramatically changing its Audience Score methodology for movies: The site’s standard user rating will now reflect only moviegoers who can prove they’ve bought a ticket to see it in a theater. It’s another troll-fighting move by Rotten Tomatoes, designed to curb coordinated “review bombs” aimed at pushing down the Audience Score for [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content