Hi and Welcome to the A & J PEI Treasures E Jean Simpson Author Blog Post and Podcast. I’m your host, Jean coming to you from the beautiful Province of Prince Edward Island, Canada!! The blog post and podcast is an opinion piece and only reflects this author’s opinion and not that of any other entity. Today I talk about a current controversy on social media. The takeover of Twitter! If you want to find out more, then stay tuned…!
Elon Musk officially bought out Twitter https://www.cnbc.com/2022/04/25/twitter-accepts-elon-musks-buyout-deal.html sort of. There have been a wide variety of reactions to the takeover of Twitter by Elon Musk. It seems that the company itself has had several owners, chairmen of the board and there are various shareholders https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Twitter. I am not sure what effect the buyout may have if it goes through as he will be owner. Reactions have run the gambit from people leaving Twitter to people celebrating the new “freedom of speech” https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2022/apr/25/twitter-elon-musk-reaction . While some are sitting back and watching to find out what the ramifications will be. There are some worrisome ideas floating around.
I think the concerns mostly surround how Mr. Musk might interpret ‘freedom of speech’. The one idea of ‘freedom of speech’ that many seem to have is that it is their right to say anything they wish without concern of being censored. However, that is a somewhat narrow view of ‘freedom of speech’. I like the definition of ‘freedom of speech’ that comes in the article on Wiki https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Freedom_of_speech. “Freedom of speech and expression, therefore, may not be recognized as being absolute, and common limitations or boundaries to freedom of speech…” they continue on to indicate that freedom of speech does not give the right to endanger or harm the freedom of others and does not impede dignity or privacy as well as some other well thought out restrictions. These should not be a burden on the general public, but a guideline toward more respectful use of speech. The article, at least the first few paragraphs, is a useful read for those who aren’t all that sure about ‘freedom of speech’. It is my concern that they decide that ‘freedom of speech’ is a fundamental right to mistreat certain groups based on religion, race, gender, gender identity and human rights of various types. This seems to agree with the concerns of various groups over the world. This would be a move backward, in my humble opinion. I hope that Mr. Musk recognizes that ‘freedom of speech’ is not without boundaries. The fact that he intends to buy out all the shareholders etc., is concerning. Making it a private company also has some concerning aspects.
The other item that seems to be a grave concern is how is Mr. Musk going to ‘confirm identities’ on Twitter. If it is click to make sure you’re not a bot…well, that’s fine. https://www.thecoinrepublic.com/2022/04/27/elon-musk-to-authenticate-all-users-on-twitter-but-why/ and https://finance.yahoo.com/news/elon-musk-wants-authenticate-every-200308848.html?fr=sycsrp_catchall as the articles suggest, however, I have a great deal of concern about giving over any Personal identification online. There is enough hacking and stuff to make me highly uncomfortable with the idea of giving over my ID to a social media conglomerate, or in fact anything online at this point. This might be a deal breaker for me. He doesn’t have to live with the consequences of my life being blown up because someone accesses my personal information. I would be the one living with it. So, that is one of the other big concerns I have seen in the media.
Of course, recent articles suggest that there are still hurdles to this agreement. It rests with shareholders. https://finance.yahoo.com/news/musks-twitter-44-b-twitter-bid-still-faces-these-legal-hurdles-144747838.html?fr=sycsrp_catchall so apparently, the shareholders can still put an end to the endeavour. So, it’s more hurry up and wait. In the meantime, we continue with the varying level of trepidation to excitation that is going on with the whole deal. The thing I hope is that cooler heads prevail and that the changes do not endanger people based on being ‘different’. That loads of nice people don’t lose their jobs. That people don’t have to worry about whether or not they will have to do shopping for a whole new social media forum.
It is apparently having an effect on Tesla stock. https://ca.news.yahoo.com/tesla-shares-slide-could-put-065848877.html so there is also that to consider. I find it very interesting how one thing can make so many changes and upset the whole equilibrium of the social media empire. The method of running Twitter may not be perfect, but perhaps, over time, the boards, shareholders and users could come up with suggestions and work things out. Currently, I can get rid of sites and things I don’t want to see. I’m not that interested in some sorts of posts. We all have our interests and things we don’t like to see. For me, the idea of groups lacking tolerance and lacking compassion for their fellow humans is a terrifying prospect. People talk about the need for world peace, the need to move forward in a positive manner. Yet, we can’t agree on simple things like what does ‘freedom of speech’ mean. How can we expect to live together in harmony if we can’t even get along on a social media platform? There are people who hate people based on the colour of their skin, their religion, their weight, their hair, their gender identity so how are we ever going to reach for world peace. Mr. Musk, with all your billions, can you buy us that? No. Mr. Musk cannot buy that. Twitter cannot sell us that. WE are the ones that have to take control of ourselves and our destiny. If we don’t do it, no one will. If we cannot be honest with each other, then at least be honest with ourselves. If you can’t respect each other, then at least live and let live.
Let us hope that Mr. Musk is a man of his word…because if he is, then these words should come back to him. “I think there should be regulations on social media to the degree that it negatively affects the public good.” (Elon Musk). I think that we need to start seeing social media as something a little different. I think that this definition of what to use social media for is an important one. Malala Yousafzai has said, “What is interesting is the power and the impact of social media… So we must try to use social media in a good way.” That doesn’t seem to be the actual goal of social media all the time.
As Emily Atack says, “Everyone is comparing lives on social media and wants the perfect body, perfect image, perfect outfit, perfect life – we’re striving for this perfection, and it’s so unhealthy because there’s no such thing as perfection.” As far as that is concerned, it is a pitfall of social media. Whether it is Elon Musk or someone else owning a site, we need to understand that no life is perfect. An old story that I remember hearing years ago as a teen was very enlightening. Someone pointed to a Persian rug that was in an exhibit. They said do you notice, there is a small imperfection in the rug. This was done on purpose. The people who made these rugs many years ago understood that if they tried to make it perfect, without flaw, they were flying in the face of God…this is because that is the only entity that is perfect. So, when you see the perfect life, the perfect career or anything that seems perfect, understand that they have trials and tribulations just like everyone else. Whether Elon Musk takes over Twitter or not, we still have to interact, we still have to be on the same planet with other people. If we do not follow our moral compass, if we decide to act with hate and disregard for others, we still fail to reach for the ultimate goal of peace on earth. Remember what you do online and how you speak online sends out ripples. You are being seen by others and sometimes by children. If you use hate speech, if you put down someone for being different, then you are the one responsible for what you are teaching others. Do you want your social media experience to be a good one? Do you want it to be a fake one? Do you want it to be a true one? Do you want it to be an honourable one? At the very least, it should be a kind and fun one.
*Note: At time of writing this, nothing has been officially completely decided.
Thanks for listening to my podcast and/or reading my blog post and thanks for your interest in A & J PEI Treasures! The Podcast that matches this blog post is found on many forums, Anchor FM is available: https://anchor.fm/a–j-pei-treasures/episodes/Twitter-pated-or-Not-e1hrupl
Our Blog Posts are available on
WordPress: https://wordpress.com/sites/aandjpeitreasures.wordpress.com and
Podcast are available on Anchor FM in a variety of formats: https://anchor.fm/a–j-pei-treasures iHeart Radio: https://www.iheart.com/podcast/269-e-jean-simpson-bed-ba-ma-a-82327485/
All my e-books can be found on:
Smashwords (my Affiliate link): https://www.smashwords.com/profile/view/?ref=ejstoo or https://www.smashwords.com/profile/view/ejstoo
You can also find us on Twitter: https://twitter.com/EJS08026749 and YouTube:
Keep watching for more e-books and more formats! We’re always working on something! Thank you!