Twitter CEO admits company needs to do more to combat abuse


Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey has admitted that Twitter and other Silicon Valley companies have not done enough to protect people from online abuse.

In a recent interview with Recode co-founder Kara Swisher, Dorsey was asked about what Swisher referred to as Twitter’s “tech responsibility.”

In response, Dorsey said he’d give the company a ‘C’ grade in terms of how responsibly it has handled issues in the past.

“We’ve made progress, but it has been scattered and not felt enough,” he tweeted. “Changing the experience hasn’t been meaningful enough. And we’ve put most of the burden on the victims of abuse (that’s a huge fail).”

Swisher then asked him to identify some of Twitter’s missteps and what the company has done to address them

To the first part of the question, Dorsey acknowledged that Twitter as a platform often leads to echo chambers, short-term thinking and increased outrage. He added that a lack of diversity at the company has likely not helped the company be more empathetic to the abuse suffered by various user groups, particularly women.

However, Dorsey was less clear when, after repeated questioning, Swisher explicitly asked him to name “three concrete things” that the company has done to fix these issues.

When Swisher asked him to elaborate, Dorsey’s responded with the following:

At the end of their interview, both Swisher and Dorsey noted that Twitter doesn’t make it easy to have a meaningful discussion on important issues. In turn, Dorsey said the experience helped him “learn a ton to fix” Twitter’s problems.

The full interview can be read chronologically on Recode.