My Super Short Twitter Wishlist

Elon Musk has successfully acquired Twitter. Many people seem convinced he will ruin it in short order. And while that’s of course conceivable, it is also possible that he will fix some long running problems. It’ s not like Twitter had been a well-run company. So now seems like a good time to resurface what I had tweeted in April.

Restoring full API access would dramatically shift power back to endusers. We could run apps other than the official Twitter client for interacting with Twitter, which would enable, among other things, a proliferation of different timeline algorithms. I first started speaking about this seven years ago and have an entire section on it in my book The World After Capital.

Fixing the blue check mark mess is something I first wrote about in 2017. Here is a quote from that post:

The net result of all of these mistakes was that the verified checkmark became an “official Twitter” badge. Instead of simply indicating something about the account’s identity it became a stamp of approval. Twitter doubled down on that meaning when it removed the “verified” check from some accounts over their contents …

Twitter had conflated identity verification with this account is “important” or “good” in a completely arbitrary fashion. And yes this has been allowed to fester for five years which is a perfect example of the failure of prior management to address basic problems in the service. I sure hope this gets fixed quickly and my (Read more...)