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Jack Dorsey wants fundamental change in Twitter, rethinking strategy

Dorsey acknowledged that what's incentivized today on Twitter is at odds with the goal of healthy dialogue. He also argued that while Twitter could “do a bunch of superficial things to address the things", but that won’t solve the underlying problem.

  • Published: April 17, 2019 12:41 PM IST
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Image Credits: Ryan Lash / TED Blog


Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey wants to rethink strategy for the microblogging platform. He says that Twitter must look at a fundamental change which is the focus shift from following specific individuals to the topics of interest. While Twitter can workaround with superficial things, Dorsey believes that changes need to be “really deep.”

Answering questions of Chris Anderson and Whitney Pennington Rodgers at the TED conference, Dorsey acknowledged that what’s incentivized today on Twitter is at odds with the goal of healthy dialogue. He also argued that while Twitter could “do a bunch of superficial things to address the things”, but that won’t solve the underlying problem.

“We want the changes to last, and that means going really, really deep,” Dorsey added (via TechCrunch).

Instead of standard TED talk, Dorsey outlined steps that Twitter has taken to combat abuse and misinformation. He compared Twitter to the Titanic, and himself to the captain of the ship. “We are working as quickly as we can, but quickness will not get the job done,” Dorsey replied to Anderson question of Twitter’s sinking democracy. “It’s focus, it’s prioritization, it’s understanding the fundamentals of the network.”

Dorsey also recalled Twitter’s first team meeting where they were deciding upon the service having follower count “big and bold,” which naturally made people focus on it. But he also believes that wasn’t the right decision at that time.

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“Was that the right decision at the time? Probably not,” Dorsey said. “If I had to start the service again, I would not emphasize the follower count as much … I don’t think I would create ‘likes’ in the first place.”

Meanwhile, Twitter also published a progress report for ‘a healthier Twitter’ outlining the fight against harassment and spam. The blog post stated that it’s become more proactive and responds 60 percent faster to appeals requests with Twitter’s new in-app appeal process.

  • Published Date: April 17, 2019 12:41 PM IST