Twitter’s looking to get more people tuning into Spaces chats by highlighting the best conversations as they happen within the Explore tab, which could result in a big boost in exposure for some chats.
we want to make it as easy as possible to find and join the best, most relevant Spaces every time you open Twitter. if the convo around a Space is taking off, you’ll now start seeing the Spaces card in the Explore/Trending tab on iOS!
— Spaces (@TwitterSpaces) October 27, 2021
That’s a significant upgrade in exposure potential, because right now, there’s no way to easily find in-progress Spaces, and unless you follow a host or speaker in a chat, you’ll never even know that it’s happening.
Twitter’s looking to improve this with its dedicated Spaces tab, which will showcase popular discussions in real time, while it also recently added Spaces topics to assist in matching the most relevant broadcasts to each user.
But discovery, as Clubhouse has also found, is a difficult element, and while it’s one thing to facilitate many audio chats, all happening at the same time, it’s another to draw audiences to them, and boost engagement based on the discussions occurring.
As with video live-streaming, highlighting relevant broadcasts can be challenging, because they’re evolving in real time, which can make it difficult to match for relevance. Assigning topics is one element, though that won’t help if the hosts drift off on tangents, while algorithmic matching, based on the people you follow and the topics that you’ve engaged with in the past, is another consideration.
But it’s not easy – which is why Facebook’s more restricted approach to the format, with audio rooms only available to selected influencers, Pages and groups, could actually be a better way to ensure that the most relevant chats are highlighted to the most likely audience as they occur.
Twitter’s still working on the best approach, but this new update could be particularly beneficial in that it will guarantee major exposure to popular chats, with Twitter’s 211 million active users dwarfing Clubhouse, and potentially facilitating much broader exposure than Facebook’s audio options as they currently stand.
If a broadcaster suddenly gets a few thousand people tuning into his or her chat, that will be a big motivator to keep broadcasting, and investing more time into Spaces as a medium. If Twitter highlights a few chats a day like this, focusing on smaller broadcasters that are starting to gain momentum, that could be a big winner for its audio social option, luring more talent into its ranks and keeping better quality content flowing through the system.
You’d imagine that the threshold for this amplification would have to be high, but even so, it could be a big winner in Twitter’s broader effort to make Spaces a key element of the app.
Though, as an aside, it does still confuse me that Twitter shares things like this:
Like, this is your platform, you can create simple tools that enable this type of filtering, without users having to know the expanded search operands to find things. If you want people to use this functionality, build a more effective search process, rather than acknowledging hacks and workarounds to counter your own system limitations.
In fairness, Twitter is working on all of these things, and this is just a quick way to search for Spaces now. But still, the fact that it’s promoting such shows that it still has a way to go in maximizing Spaces discovery.
Can it effectively maximize its approach to such to make Spaces a more important element? The potential is there, and small tweaks like this are a step in the right direction.
Twitter Admits Policy ‘Errors’ After Far-Right Abuse Its New Rules of Posting Pictures
Twitter’s new picture permission policy was aimed at combating online abuse, but US activists and researchers said Friday that far-right backers have employed it to protect themselves from scrutiny and to harass opponents.
Even the social network admitted the rollout of the rules, which say anyone can ask Twitter to take down images of themselves posted without their consent, was marred by malicious reports and its teams’ own errors.
It was just the kind of trouble anti-racism advocates worried was coming after the policy was announced this week.
“Anyone with a Twitter account should be reporting doxxing posts from the following accounts,” the message said, with a list of dozens of Twitter handles.
Gwen Snyder, an organizer and researcher in Philadelphia, said her account was blocked this week after a report to Twitter about a series of 2019 photos she said showed a local political candidate at a march organized by extreme-right group Proud Boys.
Rather than go through an appeal with Twitter she opted to delete the images and alert others to what was happening.
“Twitter moving to eliminate (my) work from their platform is incredibly dangerous and is going to enable and embolden fascists,” she told AFP.
But the rules don’t apply to “public figures or individuals when media and accompanying Tweets are shared in the public interest or add value to public discourse.”
By Friday, Twitter noted the roll out had been rough: “We became aware of a significant amount of coordinated and malicious reports, and unfortunately, our enforcement teams made several errors.”
“We’ve corrected those errors and are undergoing an internal review to make certain that this policy is used as intended,” the firm added.
Jack Dorsey Post Twitter Is Chasing His Crypto, Fintech Dream
At a packed Miami conference in June, Jack Dorsey, mused in front of thousands of attendees about where his real passion lay: “If I weren’t at Square or Twitter, I’d be working on Bitcoin.”
On Monday, Dorsey made good on one part of that, announcing he would leave Twitter for the second time, handing the CEO position to a 10-year veteran at the firm. The 45-year-old entrepreneur, who is often described as an enigma with varied interests from meditation to yoga to fashion design, plans to pursue his passion which include focusing on running Square and doing more philanthropic work, according to a source familiar with his plan.
Well before the surprise news, Dorsey had laid the groundwork for his next chapter, seeding both companies with cryptocurrency-related projects.
Underlying Dorsey’s broader vision is the principle of “decentralisation,” or the idea that technology and finance should not be concentrated among a handful of gatekeepers, as it is now, but should, instead, be steered by the hands of the many, either people or entities.
The concept has played out at Square, which has built a division devoted to working on projects and awarding grants with the aim of growing Bitcoin’s popularity globally. Bitcoin price in India stood at Rs. 44.52 lakh as of 12:50pm IST on December 1.
Dorsey has been a longtime proponent of Bitcoin, and the appeal is that the cryptocurrency will allow for private and secure transactions with the value of Bitcoin unrelated to any government.
The idea has also underpinned new projects at Twitter, where Dorsey tapped a top lieutenant – and now the company’s new CEO Parag Agrawal – to oversee a team that is attempting to construct a decentralised social media protocol, which will allow different social platforms to connect with one another, similar to the way email providers operate.
The project called Bluesky will aim to allow users control over the types of content they see online, removing the “burden” on companies like Twitter to enforce a global policy to fight abuse or misleading information, Dorsey said in 2019 when he announced Bluesky.
Bitcoin has also figured prominently at both of his companies. Square became one of the first public companies to own Bitcoin assets on its balance sheet, having invested $220 million (roughly Rs. 1,650 crore) in the cryptocurrency.
In August, Square created a new business unit called TBD to focus on Bitcoin. The company is also planning to build a hardware wallet for Bitcoin, a Bitcoin mining system, as well as a decentralised Bitcoin exchange.
Twitter allows users to tip their favourite content creators with Bitcoin and has been testing integrations with non-fungible tokens (NFTs), a type of digital asset that allows people to collect unique digital art.
Analysts see the transition as a positive signal for Square, the fintech platform he co-founded in 2009. Square’s core Cash App, after a bull run in its share in 2020, has experienced slower growth in the most recent quarter. It is also trying to digest the $29 billion (roughly Rs. 2,17,240 crore) acquisition of Buy Now Pay Later provider Afterpay, its largest acquisition ever.
But these ambitions will not pay off until years from now, analysts cautioned.
“The blockchain platform they’re trying to develop is great but also fraught with technical challenges and difficult to scale for consumers. I think he’ll focus more on Square and crypto will be part of that,” said Christopher Brendler, an analyst at DA Davidson.
© Thomson Reuters 2021
Interested in cryptocurrency? We discuss all things crypto with WazirX CEO Nischal Shetty and WeekendInvesting founder Alok Jain on Orbital, the Gadgets 360 podcast. Orbital is available on Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Spotify, Amazon Music and wherever you get your podcasts.
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Twitter Bans Sharing Personal Photos, Videos of Other People Without Consent
Twitter launched new rules Tuesday blocking users from sharing private images of other people without their consent, in a tightening of the network’s policy just a day after it changed CEOs.
Beginning today, we will not allow the sharing of private media, such as images or videos of private individuals without their consent. Publishing people’s private info is also prohibited under the policy, as is threatening or incentivizing others to do so.https://t.co/7EXvXdwegG
— Twitter Safety (@TwitterSafety) November 30, 2021
Twitter said this policy does not apply to “public figures or individuals when media and accompanying tweet text are shared in the public interest or add value to public discourse.”
“We will always try to assess the context in which the content is shared and, in such cases, we may allow the images or videos to remain on the service,” the company added.
The right of Internet users to appeal to platforms when images or data about them are posted by third parties, especially for malicious purposes, has been debated for years.
Twitter already prohibited the publication of private information such as a person’s phone number or address, but there are “growing concerns” about the use of content to “harass, intimidate, and reveal the identities of individuals,” Twitter said.
The company noted a “disproportionate effect on women, activists, dissidents, and members of minority communities.”
High-profile examples of online harassment include the barrages of racist, sexist,and homophobic abuse on Twitch, the world’s biggest video game streaming site.
But instances of harassment abound, and victims must often wage lengthy fights to see hurtful, insulting or illegally produced images of themselves removed from the online platforms.
Some Twitter users pushed the company to clarify exactly how the tightened policy would work.
“Does this mean that if I take a picture of, say, a concert in Central Park, I need the permission of everyone in it? We diminish the sense of the public to the detriment of the public,” tweeted Jeff Jarvis, a journalism professor at the City University of New York.
The change came the day after Twitter co-founder Jack Dorsey announced he was leaving the company, and handed CEO duties to company executive Parag Agrawal.
The platform, like other social media networks, has struggled against bullying, misinformation, and hate-fuelled content.
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