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Twitter backs overhaul of social media to stem disinformation

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Twitter co-founder Jack Dorsey is funding research aimed at changing the way information circulates on social media — with the goal of combating online violence, hate and disinformation.

Dorsey on Tuesday announced he would fund an independent team of five architects, engineers, and designers — dubbed Bluesky — to develop an “open and decentralized standard for social media.”

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In a series of posts, he explained the goal is for Twitter to ultimately be subject to this new standard, which would be open to adoption by fellow social media networks like Facebook or TikTok.

“We’re facing entirely new challenges centralized solutions are struggling to meet,” Dorsey said.

AFP / Denis Charlet Networks like Facebook, Twitter and TikTok currently work more like walled-off playgrounds, where posts are shared with friends within an existing framework

Those range from rooting out disinformation and detecting violent content — hate speech or child pornography — to the fact today’s algorithms tend to direct users’ toward content “that sparks controversy and outrage.”

“Centralized enforcement of global policy to address abuse and misleading information is unlikely to scale over the long-term without placing far too much burden on people,” Dorsey said.

But he argues a single technical standard shared across different platforms — which currently operate like walled gardens — could be a game changer.

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A shared new standard could curb the power of tech giants to determine what content goes viral — putting individual users in control.

It could also theoretically hand users back control of their data — currently stored and monetized by private platforms, typically through advertising.

Dorsey argued that the value of social media was increasingly shifting away from content hosting and removal, and towards recommendation algorithms.

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“Unfortunately, these algorithms are typically proprietary, and one can’t choose or build alternatives. Yet,” he wrote.

An open standard, Dorsey said, would allow Twitter to focus on building recommendation algorithms that “promote healthy conversation.”

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He also said the team would also seek to “build open community” around the new standard, to include companies and organizations, researchers and civil society leaders.

“This isn’t going to happen overnight,” Dorsey conceded.

“It will take many years to develop a sound, scalable, and usable decentralized standard for social media that paves the path to solving the challenges listed above. Our commitment is to fund this work to that point and beyond.”

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2020 Election

US military brought in to monitor police brutality protests in 7 states: leaked documents

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According to an exclusive report from The Nation, based upon Defense Department documents, U.S. military members are being dispatched to seven different states to monitor the activities of Americans who have taken to the streets to protest the death of George Floyd at the hands of four former Minneapolis cops.

The report, by the Nation's Ken Klippenstein, notes that states include, "Minnesota, where a Minneapolis police officer killed George Floyd, the military is tracking uprisings in New York, Ohio, Colorado, Arizona, Tennessee, and Kentucky, according to a Defense Department situation report," with the author pointing out, "Notably, only Minnesota has requested National Guard support."

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‘Absolute vacuum in leadership’: Internet shreds ‘coward’ Trump for hiding as 75 cities protest

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President Donald Trump is under fire Sunday after the White House announced he will not be seen today despite five days and nights of protests in more than 75 cities across the country and governors in at least ten states activating the National Guard.

Possibly more than at any time during his three-and-a-half year old administration Trump is taking tremendous criticism for how he has managed the ongoing coronavirus pandemic and for his handling of the protests against the killing by police of George Floyd.

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Trump boasts he’s about to declare Antifa a ‘Terrorist Organization’

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Donald Trump took to Twitter on Sunday morning to announce that he will be "designating ANTIFA as a Terrorist Organization."

The brief tweet followed several others blaming violence at George Floyd protests on the loosely organized group of anarchists.

The president wrote, "The United States of America will be designating ANTIFA as a Terrorist Organization."

You can see the tweets below:

The United States of America will be designating ANTIFA as a Terrorist Organization.

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 31, 2020

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