Editing Tweets Is a Bad Idea
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In the present day, Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey took questions from Twitter customers about what they need the corporate to do higher in 2017. Dorsey appeared receptive to 1 concept that Twitter’s energy customers have been begging for: the flexibility to edit tweets. That is an terrible concept.

@howardlindzon undecided why you are quoting this tweet however sure, a type of edit is def wanted. However for everybody, not simply these w badges
— jack (@jack) December 29, 2016

With the rise of pretend information, belief in issues posted on-line is at an all-time low. So why would Twitter add a characteristic that may make a person second guess what they’re studying? If a your tweet has a typo or an error, there’s a brilliant straightforward approach to repair it: simply delete it and repost the tweet. In case you had been capable of edit a tweet even minutes after sending it, you possibly can simply trick lots of people. Extra particularly, tweets with breaking information will be retweeted tons of of instances in only a matter of minutes, so if somebody was to vary a tweet after it has been retweeted 300 instances, issues might get messy.
Possibly Twitter might clear up this by including an icon to point that the a tweet has been edited, however then how would you recognize to what diploma it was edited? Twitter might add a revision historical past with a view to fight this, however 140 character tweets with a revision historical past hooked up appears extreme. And what if an important piece of knowledge is subtly modified in order that it modifies the complete which means of the tweet? And what if you happen to retweeted some sentiment that you just agreed with, solely to seek out that the tweet you simply endorsed has been modified to imply one thing solely completely different? I might go on.
Modifying tweets can be a simple manner for sloppy reporters to unfold misinformation and stitch confusion or for trolls to unfold falsehoods. Right here’s a hypothetical situation: a reporter tweets a few gunman on the intersection of Inexperienced Road and Third Avenue. The tweet is retweeted and shared tons of of instances in just some minutes. However then, the reporter realizes he misheard the police scanner and realizes there was no gunman in any respect. So he edits the tweet, leaving little hint of the unique error—until Twitter imposes that clunky revision historical past characteristic that customers would most likely ignore.
In idea, enhancing tweets sounds good, particularly for rapidly correcting typos, however there isn’t any conceivable approach to construct a tweet enhancing characteristic that wouldn’t someway result in misinformation and even be abused. A part of the brilliance that Twitter helpful is understanding that the tweet you’re seeing can’t been modified. Altering that precept would make Twitter much more complicated and fewer dependable.
If this hasn’t satisfied you that enhancing tweets is a horrible concept, check out this enjoyable thought experiment: what sort of shit would Donald Trump pull if he was capable of edit tweets?



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