November 5, 2022Opinion

The problems with Twitter and possible solutions

Note: I wrote this up a long time ago but never published it because I realized some of the proposed changes would harm Twitter's engagement. But since Elon is floating around the idea of notes, which I also thought of earlier, I'll go ahead and share my early thoughts below.

Inability to add nuance and detail to the tweet without writing an annoying tweet storm.

Solution: attach notes to tweets that expand on a subject / thought. Allow people to comment / retweet and like Notes just as much as normal tweets. This will lower the vitriol of the platform, increase time on site and generally make for a better community.

This one may have issues and decrease engagement

Inability to show that someone’s views on a topic may have changed

Solution: mark tweets as some label that indicates the opinions of the author may have developed over time (keep it generic, not mention how they feel different about it, but indicate that this may not be their current complete view on the subject of the tweet).

This may also decrease engagement as twitter will be a lot less controversial

Not being able to monitor misinformation

Solution: allow people to attach their own proof of validity / citations. A cited tweet may have some indicator that shows the citations the tweet author is citing - and some notes about what they are citing so people don’t have to read through all of the linked content. This will give more credibility to tweets that are cited - and users can decide on their own if those citations are valid / to be trusted.

This may also decrease engagement as twitter will be a lot less controversial

Inability to edit a tweet (already solved)

The main concern is likely that people will find some “liked” tweet that has been modified and now says something entirely different. This could be abused or misinterpreted and spark more outrage.

Solution: Timed edits. Allow users to edit their tweets within a short timeframe - perhaps 30 seconds. It would be very difficult to get a large number of social signals in that timeframe while also modifying the tweet content.

Also, show that the tweet has been edited (like Slack).

Bots plaguing the platform

Solution: one time authorization for a deposit that gets automatically taken out if you spam (reported by users of the tweet you are spamming - cumulative). Must have final settlement and not reversible.

This could significantly harm the platform if bots make up the majority of users (very possible).

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