Mind Matters Natural and Artificial Intelligence News and Analysis
Apple iPhone 8 with Twitter Logotype on a Screen
Kyiv, Ukraine - October 1, 2019: Studio shot of hand holding Apple iPhone 8 with Twitter logotype on a screen. Isolated on a blue paper background.
Licensed via Adobe Stock

Why Do Twitter Jobs Matter More Than Data Privacy?

The Musk ‘n Twitter show won’t leave town any time soon and it obscures a much bigger, deeper issue

Elon Musk sure knows how to create a drama. First, a brief update because you probably had better things to do this weekend:

Doom I!

“1,200 Twitter Employees Resign, Company Closes All Offices” (Rolling Stone, November 18, 2022)

Get this: “Twitter offices have been closed down and employees are resigning in droves, leading to growing fears that the service could shut down at any time.” (ScreenRant, November 18, 2022)

“While it’s unlikely that Twitter will shut down entirely, departing employees are warning of service outages, glitches and safety risks. (NPR November 18, 2022)

Worth noting:

Musk has reinstated satire site Babylon Bee and Project Veritas, and, after conducting a poll, has also reinstated former U.S. president Donald Trump (who currently claims he won’t tweet for now… )

Doom II!

Musk is not short of advice and doomsaying: Via Fortune: “Elon Musk’s ‘chainsaw’ approach to Twitter won’t work, says early SpaceX investor and former Facebook executive.” Via MSN: “Schiff: Trump reinstatement on Twitter a ‘terrible mistake’” At The Guardian: “Tesla and SpaceX history showed how hard-edged the CEO could be. At Twitter, this pattern has proved disastrous.”

Media watcher Bill Zeiser observes, taking a longer view of Doom II!:

Hate tweets won’t be found unless users seek them out, Musk said, “which is no different from the rest of the internet.” This should hardly be controversial.

Musk’s second transgression is that he is supposedly not competent enough to run Twitter. It’s hard to say whether this is true. Musk has axed a lot of longtime employees, but Twitter is bleeding money. He was derided for a new scheme to sell the coveted “blue checkmarks” indicating verified accounts, but it got people talking about the app. By Musk’s own admission, Twitter will do “stupid” things in the coming days and take chances. He is acting as a tech disruptor, an archetype once beloved by the left. It’s hardly believable that a man who is spearheading private space travel is “failure incarnate,” as Wortman called him, even if he can’t make Twitter work.

Bill Zeiser, “Left-wing Twitter goes full Apocalypse Now” at Spectator World (November 19, 2022)

All this said:

Some observers wonder why the Musk n’ Twitter show generates so much concern when China-owned Tik Tok is a much bigger threat.

This from Norton: “The short-form video-sharing app TikTok* has become wildly popular with young people, but it’s losing fans among parents, businesses, and governments over privacy and security concerns. TikTok — owned by ByteDance Inc., a Beijing-based social media company — has come under scrutiny for the information it gathers about users, how that information might be used, and who might have access to it.” (April 1, 2022)

But then, quick, when is the last time, do you remember, that Norton created a big uproar on social media?


Denyse O'Leary

Denyse O'Leary is a freelance journalist based in Victoria, Canada. Specializing in faith and science issues, she has published two books on the topic: Faith@Science and By Design or by Chance? She has written for publications such as The Toronto Star, The Globe & Mail, and Canadian Living. She is co-author, with neuroscientist Mario Beauregard, of The Spiritual Brain: A Neuroscientist's Case for the Existence of the Soul. She received her degree in honors English language and literature.

Why Do Twitter Jobs Matter More Than Data Privacy?