Twitter recently barred Dataminr, a business partner of Twitter in which the social media company also holds a 5% stake, from providing its technology to the United States intelligence agencies. The decision makes little sense from business, technical, legal or public relations perspectives. Weighing into the downstream use of its data is logically inconsistent with Twitter’s implicit objective of absolving itself from responsibility in the ongoing battle over government use of data for intelligence purposes. Most concerning, the decision shows once again Twitter’s immaturity and lack of self-awareness regarding its platform’s role in the world and Twitter’s associated responsibilities.
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