Twitter founder and former CEO Jack Dorsey responded Tuesday to the so-called “Twitter Files.”
On Dec. 2, Twitter CEO Elon Musk, who acquired the company just over a month earlier, began releasing the so-called “Twitter Files.” With the help of journalists Matt Taibbi and Bari Weiss and author Michael Shellenberger, Musk publicized batches of internal documents that show the steps the tech giant took to suppress the Hunter Biden laptop story, blacklist conservative accounts and deplatform former President Donald Trump.
Dorsey said that Twitter in its current form does not meet the standards he thinks would best suit the platform.
“I’ll start with the principles I’ve come to believe … based on everything I’ve learned and experienced through my past actions as a Twitter co-founder and lead,” he wrote on Twitter. “1. Social media must be resilient to corporate and government control. 2. Only the original author may remove content they produce. 3. Moderation is best implemented by algorithmic choice.” (RELATED: Here’s How Corporate Media Covered The Most Recent Batch Of ‘Twitter Files’)
There’s a lot of conversation around the #TwitterFiles. Here’s my take, and thoughts on how to fix the issues identified. I’II start with the principles I’ve come to believe based on everything l’ve learned and experienced through my past actions as a Twitter co-founder and lead:
— jack (@jack) December 13, 2022
“The Twitter when I led it and the Twitter of today do not meet any of these principles,” Dorsey wrote. “This is my fault alone, as I completely gave up pushing for them when an activist entered our stock in 2020.”
Dorsey did not name the “activist” investor, but multiple outlets have interpreted his words as a reference to Elliott Management, which in March 2020 used its nine percent stake in the company to try to oust Dorsey as CEO. The term “activist” refers to a shareholder that exerts pressure on the corporations in which it invests, not to political activism. Elliott CEO Paul Singer is a major Republican donor.
Dorsey went on to admit that he spent too much time focusing on creating tools “for us to manage the public conversation” rather than creating “tools for the people using Twitter to easily manage it for themselves,” adding that the company became “burdened … with too much power.”
“I generally think companies have become far too powerful, and that became completely clear to me with our suspension of Trump’s account,” Dorsey wrote.
Dorsey then expressed support for a “fresh reset” and said he does not believe that “content takedowns and suspensions” should be possible.