Prompted by “No, a ‘Facebook-style filter’ isn’t coming to Twitter — yet”: https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/the-intersect/wp/2014/09/04/no-a-facebook-style-filter-isnt-coming-to-twitter-yet/
…and by “Twitter announces crackdown on abuse with new filter and tighter rules”: http://www.theguardian.com/technology/2015/apr/21/twitter-filter-notifications-for-all-accounts-abuse
Facebook and YouTube automatically censor content (by censoring content exposure), and that censorship is non-optional for the user.
In consideration of providing the best service for users, that makes no sense.
Users should always have the option to fully manage content filtration.
That can even be accomplished by (drum roll) — using the social part of social networking.
For prime example, politely ask friends unfairly flooding your timeline to chill out on the posting ’empty’ content front, or blockage will be sadly needed. It’s simply a healthy exercise of socializing for worst through best.
Users can also conveniently organize the river of posts into manageable streams, if they inclusively prefer to avoid confrontation.
There simply is no good reason for non-optional automatic censorship.
It’s fair to note that Twitter (Facebook, YouTube, etc.) can do what they want. It’s their service, so I have no problem with their application of censorship.
I do have a problem with the lack of a suitable competitor understanding the seriously dangerous cons of traveling down Slippery Slope Avenue.
Facebook is clearly leveraging censorship to provide themselves a paywall to commercial users of their service (because ad revenue alone is insufficient).
That’s instead of simply periodically and understandably charging users a modest price (e.g. $1 yearly or monthly) for using their fairly costly service (servers and networking aren’t free) — even if only for running a fan page.
If I want to increase exposure of fan page content (including reaching people volunteering to receive all of my fan page posts), I have to pay Facebook. Consumer demand in my case finds that unacceptable, so I’m migrating to Twitter.
I outright refuse to subscribe to any automatic and non-optional censorship and the consequent stupidity in selfishly crippling the social aspect of a social network.
Based upon the two prompting pieces — the latter of which was posted last April — Twitter has relatively lightly started down Slippery Slope Avenue.
From the first prompting piece (clips reordered by yours truly)…
Ever since Facebook began tinkering with the algorithm behind its News Feed, Twitter users have taken pride in the fact that their timelines showed exactly what they asked for when they clicked the “follow” button, and nothing more.
Noto’s concern is that because important tweets fly by at the same speed as more ephemeral content, the reverse-chronological interface doesn’t serve the user in the way that Twitter wants it to.
For Twitter power users who fear the site’s potential Facebook-ification, Noto’s most worrisome remark was his observation that “putting [important] content in front of the person at that moment in time is a way to organize that content better.”
If all Twitter does is resurface a tweet from someone that a user follows, they’re not distorting what the user sees.
That last sentence (a point basically repeated multiple times in the piece) made me cringe. If old tweets are resurfaced, then new tweets are moved in the timeline, so they certainly are distorting what the user sees.
Doesn’t serve the user in the way that Twitter wants it to?
Users (at least in part) clearly prefer the absence of automatic and non-optional content censorship, and no smart business — due to the proven law of supply and demand (economics 101) — defies the demand of their customers.
Let’s look at clips from the second prompting piece…
Twitter has announced a crackdown on abuse on its network, unveiling a new filter designed to automatically prevent users from seeing threatening messages.
The filtered tweets will still exist on the service, and won’t be deleted, but the user being targeted will not see the harassment.
The new filter is based on an optional “quality filter” previously made available to verified users. That filter also screens out tweets automatically deemed to be abusive, but is far stricter about what makes it through the net than the new one. Unlike the quality filter, however, the new feature is automatically on for all users and cannot be turned off.
One dangerous trend in censorship is convincing the (at least supposed) post abuser that an (at least supposedly) abusive post is visible without problem.
That may seem understandable, but abusive posting is highly subjective. What if my fully reasonable (but cognitive dissonance generating) posts against popular political dominance were deemed abusive much further along Slippery Slope Avenue? I would believe that my actually legitimate voice is simply being ignored. I consider that cruel and unusual psychological punishment (two wrongs don’t make a right).
If Twitter ironically dangerously provides automatic censorship, then I’ll be working hard to plan and build a new social network where that can never happen. Users will be fully in charge always.
In the private area of my social network, there would be no advertising — similar to how there’s no advertising upon inviting family and/or friends to your home.
If my audience supports it, I would charge a modest price to cover information technology and other administrative costs (while always being ‘lean and mean’ in cost discipline without sacrificing quality).
I may just charge people purely within the commercial area of my social network, but I remain convinced of the advantages in having all users pay the most humble price that literally anyone owning a computer can afford.
I meticulously built my Freedom website engine for speed and simplicity (for users, designers, and developers). Despite the appearance of being a deprecated right-column display (e.g. allsines.com) in the modern era of newspaper-styled layouts with heavy content upfront ‘for your convenience and interest’ (obviously defying sound software user interface principles), Freedom is fully modular and rather advanced (e.g. two databases to separate system and user data for much easier website upgrading) — easily capable of being grown into a solid base for a new social network.
While computer technology rapidly advances and maintains a relatively high degree of complexity (and unfortunately the sustainment of rather heavy amounts of unhealthy stress against everyone using computer technology), my social network would be ‘duh proof’. A basic feature set would allow anyone to intuitively post content, because I understand that the human brain has not also rapidly advanced in the past few decades (or such).
My social network would actually be a meticulously formed social network protocol, so anyone could build their own social network (and users of different social networks could still interact with each other). Healthy competition (including collaboration) is always necessary to help keep businesses honest.
You would never become data cattle. All content would be maximally privatized (including no tracking cookies), so no third party would ever have access to your online activity (they would have to hack our network — no Internet activity can ever be righteously claimed as 100% private).
MySpace (with hundreds of millions of users prior to Facebook dominance) taught us that mass migration from a social network happens. There’s no reason to believe that it won’t happen again.
I love WordPress giving users the ability to receive email upon new posts by a followed journal. That’s the wonderful antithesis to aforementioned censorship. If that sadly changes, then also expect a simple and new journal module for Freedom.
Freedom of expression must always be available (despite the relatively rare occurrence of abuse), because the Internet must always be the power of the masses by facilitating the ample communication necessary to sufficiently organize the only power capable of promptly ending oligarchical abuse.
Major social networks today are a part of that oligarchy, and the idea that abuse only occurs outside of that elitism is favored by those elitists (and their brainwashed supporters).
Do you agree that people should have the option to avoid automatic censorship?