Note — Oct 27, 2019

Twitch CEO Emmett Shear on How Moderation Creates Communities

Seen in → No.100

Source →

I’m not much of a Twitch user, so I can’t really speak to how accurate this portrayal is, but it definitely seems like a much more intelligent take on running big platforms, free speech, communities, and responsibilities. If only for the first highlighted quote below which is so “duh” yet seemingly so often ignored.

“Some people’s communities are irreverent and a little troll-y and all about memes,” Shear said. “And some people’s communities are really earnest and connected, and people want to have a real conversation.” Twitch wants to make space for both of those kinds of communities to exist on its platform. […]

“I hope people can express themselves. I hope they can share their ideas, share their thoughts. But we’re not a platform for free speech. We are not upholding the First Amendment. That’s the government’s job. We’re a community. And communities have standards for how you have to behave inside that community. And so we think that it’s not anything goes.” […]

Now, the challenge for social platforms is to make sure that speech is used in ways that are productive and not actively bad for society. Shear said he saw at Reddit the difference between communities with strong moderation versus ones that didn’t have much moderation at all. […]

“The one with good, strong moderation, in many ways, is actually the place with freer speech, because it was actually the place where people could express themselves and not just get destroyed by trolls and abuse and harassment.”