Senior Member from GB
joined:Jan 16, 2003
Social media networks are essentially elaborate discussion forums. Makes sense that they need to curate what their member's are saying as it reflects poorly on the entity as a whole.
Most (good) forums have policies relating to what can and can't be posted - Twitter has just been slack on that front considering the size, scope and influence of their reach. That's caused issues for large swathes of their user base, which they now need to do something about.
Fair move I'd say.
I'd guess that WebmasterWorld wouldn't start arbitrarily banning members because of their political views elsewhere, but if those individuals started causing problems for others here, then action (of some sort) would likely be taken. Perhaps less necessary or likely due to pre-emptive policies to avoid such problems occurring. Twitter doesn't really have that policy structure. In fact, I'd argue that they've positioned themselves as a tool rather than a forum or community, so the "open to all" / unrestricted comment type policy has inevitably delivered negative consequences.
The political account bans I think only really address a small part of the problem they have. Imagine a forum with as many bots and fake accounts running rampant as Twitter does. That's like WebmasterWorld opening the doors to every link spam bot that was foolish enough to head in this direction.
I read a Twitter exchange the other day. A national newspaper journo was citing (what was clearly a left-leaning troll account) as being some horrible, nasty, abusive thing. She was being encouraged / supported by a number of other accounts (who were all clearly right-leaning troll accounts). News is literally being generated by a tug of war between political bot / troll accounts, with an uninformed human stuck in the middle.
That's the kind of interaction that any forum mod or admin would have nipped in the bud long before it became an issue. I think part of the issue is the scale of what social networks are trying to do and not dissimilar to the discussion in this thread about search alternatives: [webmasterworld.com
...] - content has exploded, they can't curate it effectively and as a result it's devaluing their core product offering.