What if Twitter encouraged meaningful discourse rather than sound bites and self-promotion? That was my question back in 2009.
My fear at the time was that Twitter would have a negative impact on society by leading people away from nuanced discussion. Subjects that are worth talking about just can't be fleshed out with such a tiny character limit. Much like a JPEG degrading as it gets re-shared and compressed over and over, Twitter's format crushes a conversation's depth, ambiguity, and granularity, leaving us with little more than the rhetorical version of a fart.
Of course that was well before the hate mobs, the incessant flame wars between "libtards" and "nazis," and the unbelievable level of corporate and government mass surveillance that we enjoy today.
Now, a decade later, the original question still stands, and a corollary: could a social media company succeed by behaving in an ethical manner, fostering real bonds between human beings? #first #yolo