Social media experts weigh in on Twitter’s changes

Social media experts weigh in on Twitter’s changes
Published: Nov. 18, 2022 at 6:13 PM CST
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SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (Dakota News Now) - It’s been what many would consider a rocky start for tech mogul Elon Musk since his takeover of Twitter. We sat down with some local social media experts to get their take on the future of the social media site.

Sam Thorson, with Epicosity, relies on social media for his job as a growth strategist.

“Just the last couple of weeks have literally been, hold on tight, let’s keep track of what’s going on, and sift through what’s an actual change vs what’s an experimental change,” Thorson said.

One notable change has been the implementation and quick removal of a paid verification system. Which allowed anyone to be verified with a blue checkmark for just $8 a month.

This led to various parody accounts being mistaken as the real deal, such as with pharmaceutical company Eli Lilly, when a fake account claimed insulin is now free.

“You saw the damage that it caused on the stocks of that particular business. So the real-world ramifications are incredibly true,” Thorson said.

A major concern is the problems this misinformation could cause for people and businesses, such as police departments who need their information to be considered credible.

“For example, the recent Virginia shooting. It is very critical that people have a reliable source that they know is going to be accurate information. With the repeal of the verification process, it’s really hard for someone to quickly digest any news account and understand if it’s reliable or if it’s validated,” Travis Adney said, the director of technology and operations at Lawrence & Schiller.

The layoffs, combined with the flock of employees leaving the company have people curious if Twitter will even remain active.

In the meantime, all eyes are on the World Cup beginning on Sunday, which is anticipated to see a large influx in the number of users sending out tweets.

“Large situations like the World Cup are going to exploit the holes. It’s going to exploit where the platform itself has fallen behind more so than anything has so far,” Thorson said.

In 2018 there were more than 115 billion impressions of tweets involving the World Cup. It remains unknown if this year’s numbers will kick up or down.