Evan Williams, Twitter’s co-founder, recently apologized to the world. “If it’s true that [Donald Trump] wouldn’t be president if it weren’t for Twitter, then yeah, I’m sorry,” he reported to the New York Times.
Williams, who is still on the company’s board of directors although he started his own blogging company “Medium” in 2010, announced that he wanted to “repair the damage he thinks Twitter and the broader Internet have wrought on society in the form of trolls, cyberbullies, live-streamed violince, fake news and – yes – Trump,” The Washington Post reports.
That’s not the scary part though. The scary part is what William’s then said:
“I thought once everybody could speak freely and exchange information and ideas, the world is automatically going to be a better place. I was wrong.”
It may just be me, but there is something horrifyingly sinister in announcing that allowing the world to speak freely and exchange ideas doesn’t make the world a better place. If Trump was elected off of Twitter because he was allowed to speak freely and people agreed with him, what is there not to like? Since your side didn’t win we must abandon all freedom of speech and resort to restricted, monitored, small expression?
I thought once everybody could speak freely and exchange information and ideas, the world is automatically going to be a better place. I was wrong. – Evan Williams, Twitter Co-Founder
Sadly, I feel that this is the trend that most people are going to start to agree with. People lack an understanding and appreciation for the First Amendment – so much so that they are willing to change their products to align with their own political views. Of course, Twitter is not government funded and is completely allowed to do whatever they want with their service, but it is sad to see such a strong tool for expression being altered to suppress freedom of speech.
The Founding Fathers would be rolling over in their graves, and sadly, we don’t have another continent to flee to.