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Is Twitter Evil?

by Blogger on ‎05-25-2011 08:30 AM

Google's informal corporate motto is "Don't be evil."


"Don't be evil" is said to recognize that large corporations often maximize short-term profits with actions that may not be in the best interests of the public. Supposedly, by instilling a Don't Be Evil culture, the corporation establishes a baseline for honest decision-making that disassociates Google from any and all cheating. This in turn can enhance the trust and image of the corporation that outweighs short-term gains from violating the Don't Be Evil principles. [wiki]


With Google setting up as super-hero, there needs to be a villain.  Could it be Twitter?  Recent actions by the company have some calling it the anti-hero of social media.


Just look at how they've been treating developers.   Upset that people made the move to mobile apps instead of the web-based interface, Twitter increased restrictions on third party apps to try and bring back some of the traffic they were losing.


To further solve their issues, Twitter has just been gobbling up the competition - first Tweetie, then TwitPic and now TweetDeck.


Then there was the dickbar, err, clickbar that spontaneously showed up in the Twitter app one day.  When using the official Twitter app, you were greeted with an unscrollable window at the top that featured trending topics (sponsored and not).  Problem was the topic were without context and often didnt have any relevance to the conversation in your personal stream.

To their credit, when @Jack returned to the company, his first order of business was to dispose of the dic- clickbar.


The latest is a Facebook-esque change in @ and RT notifications launched this week. Already you can click on a tab on your Twitter web page (or column in a third party app) to see who is mentioning you in their tweets.  However Twitter changed it to an email notification that was default opt-in. 



Instantly, without notice (okay they did tweet the change) inboxes were stuffed with spam and bacn from the site.  Those who went to to try and unsubscribe were left frustrated as the settings tab offered no solution.  The only way to get off the mailing list was to unsubscribe from the actual email received.  Which means the flood hit before you even had a chance to stick a finger in the dike.


Is Twitter evil?  Perhaps that's a little harsh, but when you judge it against the rules Google unofficially goes by, Twitter has definitely been "behaving badly" the past while.


catch the buzz ... pass it on.


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