Archive for the ‘Ethics’ Category

With great power comes great responsibility

Friday, May 22nd, 2009

Recently twitter deactivated accounts of Kanye West imposters. Whether this is alright or not is a tricky question. Is impersonation ok if it is satirical? Clearly yes, but usually the impersonation is transparent. But where to draw the line?

If someone impersonated you, should Twitter deactivate the impostor? If you think this is the case, then do you think it’s feasible/scalable for Twitter to do so? If not, then should they react differently to impostor deactivation requests from a public persona than from a regular user?

You can easily argue that services like Twitter are becoming increasingly integral to our socio-cultural fabric. As government simply can’t keep pace with innovation, we can’t count on traditional regulatory bodies to ensure balance - so what do we do? Simply trust their word, “don’t be evil?”

Similar examples abound - like Facebook founder’s sister flaunting the idea of removing the public page of a club she disagreed with.