'Not suggesting malice...' Musk backtracks on Twitter manipulating users
- Elon Musk said Twitter algorithm doesn't bear malice, after stating it was manipulating users
- Musk made a push for Twitter code to be open source
- Musk wants to take the company private after acquiring it
Elon Musk, the Tesla and SpaceX CEO, has now tracked back on his comments after stating that the Twitter algorithm was manipulating users. He altered his stance saying, "I’m not suggesting malice in the algorithm, but rather that it’s trying to guess what you might want to read and, in doing so, inadvertently manipulate/amplify your viewpoints without you realizing this is happening".
Strengthening his point, the billionaire continued, "Not to mention potential bugs in the code. Open source is the way to go to solve both trust and efficacy."
Earlier, Musk had suggested that the Twitter algorithm manipulated viewers into seeing top tweets, and suggested the way they can toggle to the latest tweets instead.
However, his viewpoint was challenged by the co-founder of the social media company, and a fellow free speech advocate, Jack Dorsey.
The former Twitter CEO commented that the feature wasn't added to manipulate users, but rather to save time when one has been away from the app for a while. Dorsey also suggested that simply pulling to refresh make the tweets appear in reverse chronological order again.
Musk has long wanted the Twitter algorithm to become open source, and with his move to take the company private, this could be one of the changes in the internet's purported town square.
Users seem to have agreed with Musk, with one even pointing out that the entrepreneur should spend some time on Tik-Tok, the video app that has a deal with Cannes 2022 for backstage interviews and footage.
Niloy Patel of The Verge said "Wait until you try TikTok, that’ll really bake your noodle", to which Musk replied, "Tried TikTok", and added that the platform didn't wind his clock.
The self-proclaimed free-speech absolutist, elsewhere, criticized California's stringent regulatory checks for companies, which Musk feels is stifling the creativity in the state.