Jack Dorsey regrets his “partial guilt” in the current Internet situation

Jack Dorsey expresses remorse for what has grown to be the social media giant he co-founded. With 217 million daily users, Twitter, along with other tech giants like Facebook’s meta, Google’s and Amazon’s alphabet, holds a disproportionate share of the market and user data. “I understand that I am guilty of my part, and I regret it,” Dorsey wrote in his tweet from last week.

Dorsey has previously said he regrets not formulating a plan that would define how Twitter would deal with the impact it has gained on the way people use the internet and share information on the internet. The company was founded, among other things, precisely to prevent centralization in the news content world, as a way to “decentralize” online information sources, by enabling a wider range of people to connect and share posts, Dorsey said in 2019.

But as it grew, Twitter became an almost obvious example of centralization on the Internet: it is a popular source of information and news, in part because hundreds of millions of users already have accounts. Similarly, Google accounts for more than 90% of the online search market, according to StatCounter. A eMarketer study shows that about 64% of all digital ad spend goes to Amazon, Facebook and Google.

Dorsey, who ran Twitter from 2006 to 2008 and again from 2015 to 2021, is blaming sin over his attempts to get out of Twitter: Last year he retired as CEO of the company, and will leave its board next month.

In the past, Dorsey has expressed his views that the platform should be more transparent about how it presents and promotes tweets, by publishing its algorithms. This perception of Dorsey, who might have stayed on the floor of the editing room upon his departure, may actually become popular thanks to the company’s new board member, Elon Musk, known as someone who holds similar views on how Twitter is coping with the power of influence it has gained. Alongside tweets about the limited freedom of expression he thinks the social network allows, last month Musk even tweeted that in his opinion, Twitter’s algorithms should be “open source”.

Publishing Twitter’s algorithms may create an effect that Dorsey would like: People will be able to create their own versions of Twitter, and communicate between them all, which could motivate the Internet to become less centralized. It is even possible that such an outcome is the main goal of Dorsey, who in 2019 set up a team called Bluesky, to explore long-term decentralized standards for social media.

The person who was then appointed to lead Bluesky is Farag Agrwal, who was then chief technology officer of Twitter and is now the company’s CEO. Twitter executives, and may even help ease his conscience.

By Editor

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