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The challenges and questions posed by the decentralization of Twitter

Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey has proposed an attractive measure: he wants to form a team to explore the decentralization of the social network.

A decentralized system could mean that users can define for themselves what they want to see. In other words, fewer ads and fewer algorithms.

The idea could also mean that the firm is simply trying to divert responsibility for Twitter's persistent problems with harassment and abuse. That is, you will no longer have to respond to allegations of hate speech proliferation.

For the director of the Free Expression Project of the Center for Democracy and Technology, Emma Llans, she valued the initiative, but admitted that it is difficult to imagine a platform after changing her protocol.

It all comes down to a question of whether there is a person in control of what is published. On a centralized platform, the answer is yes: someone can do it, fundamentally.

The objective of a decentralized platform is for users to have exclusive control over their data, what they publish and what they see. They do not have control of other people's data or what they see or interact.

“As a defender of freedom of expression, there are many positive aspects and benefits for decentralized models. But there are questions about whether someone publishes something illegal, how to respond to the police ?, he posed in an interview with Digital Trends.

"It's great to see Twitter paying attention to this, but it's (a preliminary idea)," he added.

However, there is already a decentralized Twitter: it's called Mastodon. The CEO of the microblogging platform, Eugen Rochko, analyzed Dorsey's words with the medium.

The executive recalled that it seemed "funny" that Mastodon was labeled a "clone" of Twitter when it was launched in 2016. Today, ironically, the story has taken a 180-degree turn.

My reaction is truly mixed. I'm not happy that the ad omitted the monumental work that Mastodon developers have done in this regard, ”he says.

That work, he said, took three years and was the result of the voluntary effort of a group of engineers. Twitter has announced that it will hire only five people and start from scratch? That is doubtful, express.

In dialogue with Digital Trends, Rochko said that Twitter's problems will not be solved by decentralizing: “You can simply clean your house and solve problems in your own space. Rather, it seems an attempt to renounce responsibility and transfer it to others, ”he says.